YOUNG VOICES

University Challenge Star Bobby Seagull Gives His Top Tips For A Level Results Day

'Life isn't always plain sailing. It's how you respond that defines who you are.'

16/08/2017 15:39 BST | Updated 16/08/2017 18:10 BST

When you think of Bobby Seagull - University Challenge legend and one of Britain’s most recognisable brainiacs - you probably don’t imagine that he would know a lot about disappointing exam results. 

But the 33-year-old’s path to becoming a quiz show whiz was far from smooth. 

After winning a scholarship to Eton, doing an internship at KPMG and finally bagging himself at place at Oxford University, Seagull realised part-way into his degree that his marks were slipping. 

“By the end of the first year, I realised I probably wasn’t going to be on course for a 2:1,” he said. 

“So at the start of the second year I made a really difficult decision to actually leave Oxford and move to Royal Holloway to do Maths and Economics.

“Life isn’t always plain sailing.” 

But Seagull, who went on to become a trader at Lehman Brothers before training to be a Maths teacher, strongly believes that it’s how you react to adversity that matters most. 

“Exams are important - I’m a teacher and I do think exams open up a passport to future opportunities,” he said. “But they are not the be all and end all. 

“It’s not what happens, but how you respond to it that matters - almost like a boxer. 

“You get knocked down, but you gotta get back up.”