Nov 24 2017

Yuji Okitani wins UK ‘Who Wants to Be a Mathematician’ Final

Simon Singh, Yuji Okitani and Matt Parker

Simon Singh, Yuji Okitani and Matt Parker

Yuji Okitani from Tapton School in Sheffield was today crowned the 2017 UK winner of Who Wants to Be a Mathematician, our annual search for the country’s top young mathematical mind.

Yuji competed in the final earlier today, alongside fellow finalists Connie Bambridge-Sutton from Reigate Grammar School, Surrey, Dougie Dolleymore from King Edwards School, Birmingham, and Timothy Kang from St Paul’s School, London. The four finalists out-scored more than 1100 other UK students to qualify for the UK final, which was hosted by stand-up mathematician Matt Parker, who is the author of Things to Make and Do in the Fourth Dimension. The final took place at King’s College London Mathematics School.

Simon Singh, Yuji Okitani, Dougie Dolleymore, Timothy Kang, Connie Bambridge-Sutton and Matt Parker

Simon Singh, Yuji Okitani, Dougie Dolleymore, Timothy Kang, Connie Bambridge-Sutton and Matt Parker

As UK champion, Yuji wins an all-expenses-paid trip to San Diego to compete in the Grand Final against finalists from the US and Canada, courtesy of the pro-science charity Good Thinking. There he has the chance to win the prize of $5,000 plus $5,000 for his school, Tapton School in Sheffield.

Simon Singh, chair of Good Thinking and author of “Fermat’s Last Theorem”, said: “With more than a thousand students from around the UK taking part, all of the finalists should feel very proud of themselves.

“We’d like to thank everyone who took part, and to wish Yuji the very best of luck for the Grand Final in January”.

Good Thinking would like to thank the Maths Department at the University of Southampton for their competition sponsorship. You can find out more about this world class maths department by visiting their website.

Who Wants to Be a Mathematician logoWe’d also like to say a huge thanks to Mike Breen of the American Mathematical Society, who developed the competition and worked with us to run it in the UK.

Finally, thanks to every pupil who took part, and every teacher who supported them. We are already working on ways to make next year’s competition even bigger and better.