The legendary quiz star from The Chase could not keep up with a quizmaster 50 years his junior, answering a trivia question from a young student incorrectly.

Shaun Wallace, AKA the Dark Destroyer, visited a primary school in central Auckland this afternoon to speak about the importance of education and hard work, to which he credits much of his success.

But after watching an impressive clip in the school hall of Wallace knocking out a team of competitors on the Chase, the Chaser surprised everyone by giving the wrong answer to a general knowledge question.

After Wallace's presentation, Andrew Skilton, aged 5, asked which of our native birds appears on the logo of the New Zealand Air Force. The audience at Kohia Terrace School got a "pushback" when his answer was the New Zealand falcon (it's actually a kiwi).

Advertisement

Wallace told the Herald that he was only too happy to concede defeat to the youngster. He said it's not the first time he's failed - when he was himself a student, he was by no means the "genius" many see him as today.

The legendary quiz star from The Chase could not keep up with a quizmaster 50 years his junior, answering a trivia question from a young student incorrectly.
The legendary quiz star from The Chase could not keep up with a quizmaster 50 years his junior, answering a trivia question from a young student incorrectly.

"I failed my A-Level English five times," he said, referring to the British version of NCEA level 3 exams.

"I'm not too proud to be beaten by somebody young. I wrote in his book saying "well done, you beat The Chaser".

But while Wallace's intelligence is undoubted, the former Mastermind champion believes everyone has the ability to be as intelligent as him.

"I want people to realise that having a clever mind isn't necessarily a passport to actually knowing how to pass exams.

"I didn't have the maturity to grasp that concept. But once I did the penny dropped.

"Reciting facts and figures under pressure isn't the way to answer exams and as you go through the various levels of exams it requires a different skill.

"It's not memory. I'm no cleverer than you. If you have an interest in something you'll remember it. Your brain is a wonderful concept. people don't realise how fantastic it is to be able to absorb information.

Advertisement

"I'm not interested in the questions I get right. I'm interested in the questions they get wrong."

Wallace's rise to fame hit a number of roadblocks, including the racial discrimination he suffered while on the show Mastermind.

The Dark Destroyer explains he was written off from the start simply because of the colour of his skin.

He told the Herald it eventually worked in his favour with other contestants underestimating his ability.

"The advantage I had when I was doing quizzes before was the fact I was black because people used to underestimate my intelligence by the colour of my skin.

"When I won Mastermind the game, I was the first person of colour to apply for the show. The only people who knew I stood a chance was my friends because they knew how good I was."

Wallace is in New Zealand to promote his autobiography.

He is also hosting the 20th annual New Zealand Pub Quiz Championships, organised by the quiz company Believe It Or Not.