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Countdown to engineer’s contest for top TV gong

A quick-thinking engineer has used his problem-solving skills to secure a finalist’s place on the popular TV gameshow Countdown

From Press releases - 16 July 2019 12:00 AM

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Tom Silverlock, an electrical engineer at UK Power Networks, has reached the quarter-finals of the Channel 4 show and aims to be crowned overall champion when recording resumes in September. The final will be screened around Christmas. 

Contestants can win a maximum of eight games before being entered into the finals, and those who do are referred to as ‘Octochamps’. Tom won an initial four, before being called back to the studios in Manchester where he remained undefeated and won another four, earning his Octochamp title. The eight rounds were all shown on TV this month (July) with the last screened July 15.

The overall winner will collect a Countdown trophy, laptop, a collection of encyclopedia and other Countdown memorabilia - and of course the glory.

Tom from Camden works to help keep power supplies reliable in his local area. He said: “I’ve always been quite good with numbers and words but rarely watched Countdown on TV. I thought I’d give it a go but definitely didn’t expect to win any games.

“One of my work colleagues came to the second recording and he was giving me motivational speeches. It was all a bit of good fun and my progress has been well received in the office with some of my colleagues watching the episodes.”

The iconic quiz, first broadcast in 1982, requires contestants to race against the clock as they pit their wits against vowels, consonants and numbers. In 2014, it entered the Guinness World Records for having broadcast the most series of a TV game show.

UK Power Networks keeps the lights on for more than eight million homes, schools, hospitals and businesses across London, the South East and East of England. The company invests more than £600 million annually in maintaining and improving electricity networks.