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Dan McColm

From Countdown
Dan McColm
Octochamp Statistics
Final positionChampion
Points total942
Conundrums solved6
Dan McColm in Series 64.
Dan McColm holding the Richard Whiteley Memorial Trophy.

Dan McColm was a contestant in Series 64, an octochamp in and the series champion of Series 71, and the runner-up of Championship of Champions XIV. He is also an Apterite and a member of C4Countdown.

Appearances on the programme

Heat games

McColm's Countdown career began in Series 64, when he was defeated in a close contest against future quarter-finalist Ned Pendleton. However, this wasn't an entirely bad thing, as he was allowed to return in Series 71 (less than four years later), leaving his mark as one of the greatest octochamps in the show's entire history.

McColm's incredible octochamp run started off with a relatively close game against one-time winner, primary school teacher Gary Mehaffy from Nixon's Corner. McColm started off by finding SULCATE, giving him a 7 point lead. However, a tough battle between the two and McColm offering the invalid word annatos ☓ saw Mehaffy equalise in round 7. Despite the close first half, the game was pretty one-sided fro this point on, with McColm ending his not-technically-a-début début with an extremely impressive 13 maxes and 113 points. He then went on to win a further 7 games, including 6 more centuries and – for the first time ever – a run of three consecutive scores above 125, offering words like NANOTUBE, TERATOMA, PERORATE and perhaps the greatest 9 spot in the history of CountdownINAMORATO. McColm also took advantage of this being the first ODO-dictionary series, offering modern words such as WHATEV, and solving the conundrum PHOTOBOMB in just a second. McColm's score of 137 in his sixth game is the highest ever for a game with only one nine available, and this along with his 4 nines and impeccable numbers and conundrum performance landed McColm with a cumulative score of 942.


After defeating Paul Worsley in the quarter-finals, he defeated the #5 seed, George Ford in the semi-final with a perfect game. McColm then went on to face #2 seed Antoinette Ryan. In a close contest, in which McColm dropped behind for the first time by two points, McColm steamrolled to victory and became series champion after solving the conundrum LETHALITY in just four seconds.

Championship of Champions XIV

"Cool Dan", as he became known on the show, returned in 2016 for Championship of Champions XIV, coming up against another series winner, Paul James of Series 67, in the last 16. Cool Dan won this match 106 – 69, solving the conundrum TOMBOYISH in a second. Another series winner laid waiting in the quarter-finals in Series 70 champion Mark Murray. In a very tense battle of the 2014 champions, Cool Dan won 112 – 99 to set up a semi-final against Jen Steadman. In a thrilling match, the spot of ROSMARINE in round 7 proved crucial for McColm, who would win the match 125 – 117, with further brilliance including GENIUSED. In the final against Series 69 runner-up Dylan Taylor, and after finding himself 25 points behind after 6 rounds, McColm pegged him back thanks to the nine METACONID. They would remain 7 points apart (notably with McColm spotting ROSMARINE a second time) up until the crucial conundrum, where after 1.5 seconds, Taylor unravelled NICETASTY to become the fourteenth Champion of Champions.


McColm made his Co-event début at COLIN 2012, before finishing as the runner-up at both CO:REA in April and COHUD in June of the same year. He eventually won his first Co-event at Leeds in 2018, beating Zarte Siempre in the final.

Preceded by
Mark Murray
Series winner
Series 71
Followed by
Tom Cappleman

Preceded by
Charlie Reams
Champion of Champions runner-up
Championship of Champions XIV
Followed by
Bradley Horrocks


# Date Type Contestant 1 Score Contestant 2 Presenters Guest Lex Max
5212 24/02/2011 P Ned Pendleton 89 – 66 Dan McColm Jeff Stelling Rachel Riley Mark Foster Susie Dent 118
6007 8/10/2014 P Gary Mehaffy 70 – 113 Dan McColm Nick Hewer Rachel Riley Tony Jacklin Susie Dent 131
6008 9/10/2014 P Dan McColm 92 – 70 Ben Hodgson Nick Hewer Rachel Riley Tony Jacklin Susie Dent 127
6009 10/10/2014 P Dan McColm 112 – 37 Daisy Stemple Nick Hewer Rachel Riley Tony Jacklin Susie Dent 119
6010 13/10/2014 P Dan McColm 116 – 47 John Vivian Nick Hewer Rachel Riley Richard Arnold Susie Dent 128
6011 14/10/2014 P Dan McColm 129 – 58 Samantha Cooper Nick Hewer Rachel Riley Richard Arnold Susie Dent 131
6012 15/10/2014 P Dan McColm 137 – 53 Harry Jarrett Nick Hewer Rachel Riley Richard Arnold Susie Dent 139
6013 16/10/2014 P Dan McColm 126 – 44 Antony Aston Nick Hewer Rachel Riley Richard Arnold Susie Dent 130
6014 20/10/2014 P Dan McColm 117 – 51 Stephen Whieldon Nick Hewer Rachel Riley Richard Arnold Susie Dent 121
6050 10/12/2014 QF Dan McColm 109 – 60 Paul Worsley Nick Hewer Rachel Riley Arlene Phillips Susie Dent 121
6054 17/12/2014 SF Dan McColm 123 – 77 George Ford Nick Hewer Rachel Riley David Baddiel Susie Dent 123
6056 19/12/2014 GF Dan McColm 117 – 87 Antoinette Ryan Nick Hewer Rachel Riley David Baddiel Susie Dent 129
6284 12/01/2016 CP Dan McColm 106 – 69 Paul James Nick Hewer Rachel Riley John Inverdale Susie Dent 122
6289 19/01/2016 CQF Dan McColm 112 – 99 Mark Murray Nick Hewer Rachel Riley Naga Munchetty Susie Dent 145
6291 21/01/2016 CSF Jen Steadman 117 – 125 Dan McColm Nick Hewer Rachel Riley Naga Munchetty Susie Dent 146
6292 22/01/2016 CGF Dylan Taylor 121 – 104 Dan McColm Nick Hewer Rachel Riley Naga Munchetty Susie Dent 154

Championship of Champions Runners-Up

I : Joyce Cansfield | II : Peter Evans | III : David Trace | IV : Tony Vick | V : Gino Corr | VI : Chris Waddington | VII : Damian Eadie | VIII : Kenneth Michie | IX : Pete Cashmore | X : Kate Ogilvie | XI : Chris Wills | XII : Mark Tournoff | XIII : Charlie Reams | XIV : Dan McColm | XV : Bradley Horrocks | XVI : James Haughton