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Dan Byrom

From Countdown
Dan Byrom
Octochamp Statistics
Final positionChampion
Points total967
Conundrums solved4
Dan Byrom in Series 85.
Dan Byrom holding the Richard Whiteley Memorial Trophy after winning Series 85.

Dan Byrom was an octochamp in and the champion of Series 85, the third octochamp to be crowned in under five weeks, and a semi-finalist in Championship of Champions XVI. A member of Apterous from Sheffield, he was a gap year student, part-time tutor and Business Development assistant for his father's audiology firm at the time of his Series 85 games. At the time of his Champion of Champions appearances, he was a PhD Student at the University of Warwick.

Appearances on the programme

Byrom made his TV debut on 6 November 2017 as the audience member who solved the conundrum after a failed attempt from both contestants.

When he himself became a contestant on 27 January 2022, he scored 140 points – the highest ever debut score in Countdown history. In his second game, he maxed the first 14 rounds, but his opponent Dave Root prevented him from achieving only the 12th ever max game by solving the conundrum. Byrom equalled his personal best of 140 in his fifth game, before seeing off stiff competition against fellow Apterite Gabriel Thallon in his sixth. Byrom completed his run of 8 games undefeated, all with centuries, and climbed to the top of the seed table with 967 points – a total shared with Zarte Siempre.

Maintaining his No. 1 position in the seed table, Byrom comfortably won his quarter-final match against five-time winner Craig Fawcett by a 79-point margin. His semi-final affair against Ryan Carlsen was much closer: both players matched each other in all 10 letters games, and Byrom found himself seven points down after losing the third numbers round. Crucially, though, he turned ISNOMERCY into CRONEYISM to march on to the Grand Final against No. 2 seed Matt O'Connor.

In a very close and nail-biting Final, it was O'Connor who came off the blocks first with OCTOPINE to lead Byrom eight points to zero. However, Byrom took a large chunk of points off the opposition by solving a six-small numbers game in Round 3, followed by a brilliant nine in EMPAESTIC to establish a 20-point advantage. In the third numbers round, Byrom declared 2 away from the target, however his maths method was actually revealed to be the desired target of 684. The gap swung back and forth many times from then on but, after both players missed the final numbers target by one, Byrom – by a mere three points in the end – clinched the title, with his Xicount total across his 11 games being 1,251 points.

Byrom returned in January 2023 to participate in Championship of Champions XVI where fellow Series 85 finalist Steve Hyde took him on in the preliminary round. Both players equalled each other at first, until Dan made a definite break with spots like LETTIGAS and PATRONNE, securing his tenth century game, even though a nasty conundrum RICETRAIL was missed by both players. Thus, he moved onto a quarter-final matchup against Elliott Mellor. In a closely fought battle, Dan took an early lead after cracking a 6S numbers selection that Mellor missed, and never relinquished the lead after that, although Elliott got closer after Dan's offering of onlier ☓ backfired. A crucial conundrum was left unsolved, which meant Dan progressed at Elliott's expense and remained unbeaten going into the semis, where he faced his predecessor Ahmed Mohamed.

In another nail-biting encounter, it was impossible to separate either player, with both of them scoring the same points in the first 14 rounds, in possibly the greatest match ever played in the 15-round format. Unfortunately for Dan, it was Ahmed who very quickly solved the crucial conundrum and advanced to the grand final, relegating Byrom to his only defeat on the show, but he still bowed out with a highly impressive score of 111 and a final total of 1,576 points from 14 appearances (with an average of roughly 112.5 points per game).


Prior to his Countdown debut, Byrom participated in Series 1, Series 2 and Series 4 of ZoomDown.

Preceded by
Ahmed Mohamed
Series winner
Series 85
Followed by
Tom Stevenson


# Date Type Contestant 1 Score Contestant 2 Presenters Guest Lex Max
7685 27/01/2022 P Crispin Salfarlie 41 – 140 Dan Byrom Anne Robinson Dr Anne-Marie Imafidon Ruby Wax Susie Dent 153
7686 28/01/2022 P Dan Byrom 123 – 74 Dave Root Anne Robinson Dr Anne-Marie Imafidon Ruby Wax Susie Dent 133
7687 31/01/2022 P Dan Byrom 117 – 54 Joe Slade Anne Robinson Dr Anne-Marie Imafidon Ruby Wax Susie Dent 150
7688 01/02/2022 P Dan Byrom 121 – 50 Heather Marsh Anne Robinson Dr Anne-Marie Imafidon Tim Vine Susie Dent 134
7689 02/02/2022 P Dan Byrom 140 – 59 Stuart Fenwick Anne Robinson Dr Anne-Marie Imafidon Tim Vine Susie Dent 143
7690 03/02/2022 P Dan Byrom 108 – 87 Gabriel Thallon Anne Robinson Dr Anne-Marie Imafidon Tim Vine Susie Dent 125
7691 04/02/2022 P Dan Byrom 114 – 32 David Moseby Anne Robinson Dr Anne-Marie Imafidon Tim Vine Susie Dent 129
7692 07/02/2022 P Dan Byrom 104 – 40 Iain Andrews Anne Robinson Dr Anne-Marie Imafidon Tim Vine Susie Dent 146
7780 09/06/2022 QF Dan Byrom 106 – 27 Craig Fawcett Anne Robinson Rachel Riley Jay Rayner 124
7784 15/06/2022 SF Dan Byrom 97 – 94 Ryan Carlsen Anne Robinson Rachel Riley Jay Rayner 120
7786 17/06/2022 GF Dan Byrom 81 – 78 Matt O'Connor Anne Robinson Rachel Riley Robert Rinder 136
7928 10/01/2023 CP Steve Hyde 70 – 108 Dan Byrom Colin Murray Rachel Riley Heather Small Susie Dent 135
7931 13/01/2023 CQF Elliott Mellor 102 – 106 Dan Byrom Colin Murray Rachel Riley Heather Small Susie Dent 124
7935 19/01/2023 CSF Dan Byrom 111 – 121 Ahmed Mohamed Colin Murray Rachel Riley Rick Edwards Susie Dent 122