Mastermind has first black winner
The Guardian article
In between practising criminal law, lecturing part-time and coaching future football stars, Shaun Wallace also found time to expand his knowledge of FA Cup finals since 1970.
That knowledge yesterday crowned him TV's Mastermind and won him a place in the history books as the contest's first black winner.Mr Wallace, 44, a barrister from north London, beat five finalists, including a retired chemist, a financial adviser and a factory worker, to take the coveted glass bowl.In a close final, the result was finally decided on the number of passes. Don Young, whose specialist subject was the life and reign of Elizabeth II, also scored 24 points but notched up two passes to Mr Wallace's none.Before winning, Mr Wallace, who lives in Wembley, north-west London, compared the experience of walking out before host John Humphrys to preparing for a football match. "It is like being in the tunnel before you go out on to the pitch, but you just have to focus on the job in hand," he said.Mr Wallace is not only the first black winner of the show but also only the second non-white person to reach the finals since the show began in 1972. The BBC hopes his success will encourage more contestants from ethnic minority backgrounds.The son of Jamaican-born parents, Mr Wallace read law at North London Polytechnic - now London Metropolitan University - before qualifying as a barrister in 1984. He faced prejudice from the beginning. When he first appeared at Bristol crown court, he was mistaken for the defendant.
He was presented with the prize by the BBC chairman, Michael Grade.