They're Off!



Nicholas Parsons


Larry Cross


ITV, 25 July to 12 September 1956 (8 episodes in 1 series)


Billed as "the give-away racing quiz", this was essentially a straightforward quiz with contestants answering general knowledge questions for a varying number of points. But instead of giving the contestants podia and keeping the score with a flipchart like any sensible programme, in this one the players were sat on hobby-horses (fairground-style, we think) and when they answered a question correctly they moved the prescribed distance along the track, the horses being "led along" by "stable lasses" in swimsuits (insert water polo joke here). Nicholas Parsons presided in posh Ascot-type gear, the studio audience were encouraged to shout "they're off!" and the whole thing was utterly bonkers. It failed to last the course and was swiftly put down.


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