Are the Texas Prairie Chickens Canberra's best trivia team?
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Are the Texas Prairie Chickens Canberra's best trivia team?

Is this Canberra's best trivia team? The Texas Prairie Chickens have been dominating Thursday night trivia at The RUC in Turner for so many weeks now that the club has begun handicapping them.

One week they were docked 100 points and still won by 60 odd points.

The Texas Prairie Chickens trivia team: front, from left, Andy Turbayne, Annabel Vickers, Judy Turbayne and Bruce Faraday. Back, from left, David Vickers, Honza and Catherine Mikula.

The Texas Prairie Chickens trivia team: front, from left, Andy Turbayne, Annabel Vickers, Judy Turbayne and Bruce Faraday. Back, from left, David Vickers, Honza and Catherine Mikula.Credit:Jamila Toderas

The Chickens are a mixed bunch and team stalwart David Vickers says this is the secret to their success.

"We've got people who are good at different things so we can cover all the bases," he says.

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"We've got young people who know current music, which we're hopeless at, we've got a retired history and geography teacher, I studied English literature, we all love movies.

"We've just got the right synchronicity I guess."

Vickers and teammate Honza Mikula have been competing together at various locations for about 10 years. The pair met when mutual friends invited them both to be part of a trivia team.

Mikula appeared on Who Wants to be a Millionaire in 2001 and won a substantial amount of money "but he went out on a question I knew the answer to", says Vickers.

Mikula was also a contestant on Rockwiz in 2013.

"I agree with David," Mikula says. "Our strength is our broad knowledge. But that said it's a social thing and we come to catch up and have a meal."

While the team changes every now and again, over summer it's consisted of Vickers and Mikula, Judy Turbayne, Bruce Faraday, Andy Turbayne, Annabel Vickers and Catherine Mikula. The ABC's Rod Quinn was also once a member.

Annabel, David's daughter, is 23. She's saved them on many a current music question. Faraday, a retired history and geography teacher, is 70.

Vickers runs a bookshop, Mikula is a data analyst, Andy is a sonographer with a love of medicine, science and sports. The others work in varied positions in retail, healthcare and volunteer work.

Michael Axelson, who runs the Thursday night trivia at The RUC, says the Chickens probably win about 75 per cent of the time but other teams aren't put off by the stiff competition.

Indeed the trivia competition has grown over the summer it reached capacity a couple of times with close to 130 people competing.

The RUC uses the electronic QuizXpress system and was the first venue to pick it up in Canberra. A couple of more venues are now on board. QuizXpress is a multiple choice system, which does allow for some "educating guessing", says Vickers, but all teams enjoy the instant score updates and varied rounds such as fastest finger, last man standing and jeopardy.

Axelson says The RUC attracts a varied trivia crowd, from the "blue rinse set", to Uni-Norths Owls rugby players who come in after training during winter, join in late and have their scores pro-rataed so they can still compete.

Vickers says in his experience Canberra is pretty high-end when it comes to trivia given our high education levels.

"Canberra is a pretty clever place," he says, "that always adds to the challenge."

Trivia is almost a daily occurrence in Canberra with venues across the city hosting events most nights of the week.

Later this month The Durham in Kingston is hosting two Simpsons Trivia Shows with 40 questions about the cult television show on February 17 and 24.

Fame Trivia hosts nights at several venues across town, from Young & Frisky in Gungahlin, to the Calwell Club.

The Canberra Times would like to see all the best teams from the different venues around town come together in some grand challenge. The RUC is up to hosting an event.

If you think you've got a team that can beat the Texas Prairie Chickens let us know.

Karen Hardy is a reporter at The Canberra Times.

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