Derby Dead Pool

The online competition to guess which famous people won't make it to the end of the current year. If they're elderly, ill, or just live a high-risk lifestyle, stick 'em in your team, and for each one whose death you correctly predict, you'll score points. DDP was dreamt up in Derby, England (hence the name...) by Big Iain back in 1996, then was run from 2003 to 2007 by Siegfried Baboon and Rude Kid From 2008 to 2009, it was run by Octopus of Odstock , and from 2010 to 2017 by The Man In Black. From 2018, Spade Cooley is host...

Latest Stiffs: 31st July 2018 by Spade Cooley

[Picture of Lord Carrington]

Even he's feeling the heat...

carrington my wayward son

The Grim Reaper has set his out-of-office messages up seemingly, with the torrent of celeb deaths reduced to a trickle as temperatures hit 35 in the UK. However, here’s a round-up of those who took a permanent vacation these past few weeks.

With the death of Lord Carrington, there are no longer any politicians remaining who served in the governments of Winston Churchill, Anthony Eden or Harold Macmillan. Born into peerage rather than appointed, he was the last member of the House of Lords to hold any of the Great Offices of State. That was Defence Minister, a position he resigned from in 1982 over his failure to prepare adequately for Argentina’s invasion of the Malvinas. Elsewhere his career was a mixed bag: he helped bring peace to Rhodesia in 1979 (and was particularly fond of a young upstart politician named Robert Mugabe), but he also authorised the use of torture during The Troubles in its early years. Unsurprisingly for a 99-year-old slam dunk front page obituary type, Carrington was a popular pick, with 23 teams scoring.

Who doesn’t love Leeds United? Other than Brian Clough, Asian students, and literally everyone else on the planet. However, Paul Madeley managed to find admiration even among those who despise the Dirty Whites. A one-club man, Madeley made 536 appearances for the Elland Road outfit between 1963 and 1980, and was known as the “Rolls Royce player” amid the AFVs that made up the rest of Don Revie’s first XI. He was no stranger to confrontation though: it was said to be his word that finally brought the axe down on Clough during his 44-day sojourn in Yorkshire, and he refused Alf Ramsey’s offer to play in the 1970 World Cup because he’d already booked his holiday. Madeley had long been in ill health and died aged 73, becoming a hit for five teams.

One of golf’s most notoriously laidback figures, Bruce Lietzke could and should have been a bigger deal. Famous for never practicing, he never played more than 25 events in a single season either. He was the only member of the USA’s 1981 Ryder Cup-winning team to never win a major – the closest he got was in 1991, when he finished 2nd in the PGA Championship to rank outsider and bon vivant John Daly. Lietzke was diagnosed with a deadpooler’s best friend, glioblastoma, in late 2017 and has now sliced permanently aged 67. Bobby Zarin's Mack the Knifed get the unique hole-in-one.

Jockey Laura Barry was a promising apprentice who rode 18 winners in a 193-ride career, including the 2011 Stars of the Future Apprentice Handicap. However, she never got to enjoy a professional spell in saddle as she was diagnosed with an aggressive malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumour in 2016, which paralysed her. The cancer spread in late 2017, putting her on one DDP team’s radar, and her death at 25 (one day before her scheduled wedding to the brother of fellow jockey Tony Hamilton) saw Thomas Jefferson Survives claim a crucial unique hit. Ironic that deadpooling’s perennial bridesmaids climb into third place following a bride’s death, no?

stig in the mud

One of the more surprising things I found when entering data for this year’s DDP was that Clive King, the author of “Stig of the Dump”, had never been picked before. This is possibly because everyone assumed he was already dead. Although he had a 40-year career in children’s literature, he was easily best known for his 1963 book about a schoolboy who discovers a caveman in a local chalk pit. Twice adapted for TV, it’s still read in schools today. King finally abdicated aged 94 and becomes a unique joker hit for Bibliogryphon's Bookworm Food.

Such was Oliver Dragojevic’s popularity, his death has led to an official day of mourning in his native Croatia. His music combined traditional Dalmatian (the stolen clay of Italy, not the dog) “klapa” singing with soft jazz, and to be honest it sounds like it finished 17th at the Eurovision every single year. However, he was popular enough that even among the diaspora he could sell out Carnegie Hall in the States and the Royal Albert Hall in England. His diagnosis with lung cancer last year made headlines outside Croatia, and he’s finally decided to split aged 70. Three teams score.

If there was a Nazi or an uptight British military officer to be played in the UK throughout the 1970s, Bernard Hepton was on the phone to the casting agent. One of Britain’s most utilised character actors of the three-channel era, Hepton first broke through playing Thomas Cranmer in “The Six Wives of Henry VIII” – a role he would reprise two other times throughout his career. However, he was probably best known as the Anglophilic Toby Esterhase in “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy” and “Smiley’s People”. He’s now died aged 92 and three teams cash in.

The world’s oldest person has died, yet again. This time out it’s Chiyo Miyako, who had a four-month run in the top spot and was only ruled as a legit oldie by Guinness World Records days before her actual death. She credited her longevity to eating eels and drinking red wine, and there is literally nothing else remotely interesting to say about her. She was born five days before Gary Cooper, that’s about it. Anyway, the curtain fell on her aged 117 and three teams get the points.

Latest Stiffs: 8th July 2018 by Spade Cooley

[Picture of Joe Jackson]

Finally, daddy's spending time with me...

jj fad

The man who beat Michael Jackson with a belt so hard he became a paedophile, Joe Jackson, has died. The young Jackson had intentions on becoming a professional boxer or a blues guitarist. However, neither career took off so, like many other failures before him, he doubled down on his children’s attempts at fame. The Jackson Brothers originally comprised Jackie, Tito and Jermaine, but it was only when a young Michael joined the group that major labels started to take notice. The Jackson 5 signed with Motown in 1969 and the rest is history, with Joe’s name becoming a byword for pushy parents and the fine art of smacking the shit out of someone with a belt. Double J had been in poor health for a number of years and has now died aged 89. Twelve teams score points, unless they actually meant to pick the ugly new wave pianist.

Another figure who failed to become a top star in combat sports was Matt Cappotelli. Cappotelli was co-winner of the MTV reality series Tough Enough in 2003, and won himself a contract with the WWE. However, his time on the show is more famous for an incident in which he was physically assaulted for real by Hardcore Holly on camera. The attack became a minor scandal and was one of the first times a shoot fight had been reported on outside of the wrestling media. Cappotelli never made it to the big leagues: during his developmental days he was diagnosed with brain cancer, forcing his early retirement from sports entertainment aged 28. Ten years later, the cancer returned in a much more forceful manner, putting deadpoolers everywhere on notice. 24 teams in total had banked on him not being tough enough to make it through the year, and now the grim reaper has finished off the job ol’ Sparky Plugg couldn’t at the age of 38.

French filmmaker Claude Lanzmann was the man behind arguably the definitive work on the Holocaust, and one of the most famous documentaries of all time. “Shoah” (1985) took 11 years and some 350 hours of raw footage to make. Lanzmann conducted so many interviews, including undercover talks with high-ranking members of the Third Reich, that he was able to make an additional four feature films from the leftover footage. Lanzmann himself was a member of the French Resistance in WWII and was also Simone de Beauvoir’s lover for a spell in the 1950s. He was 92 and a unique hit for The Policies Of Benjamin Netanyahu.

Alan Longmuir was still working as a plumber when the Bay City Rollers got signed to a major label deal. Serving as bassist for their first wave of popularity, he was the eldest member of the teen icons – and that unease of being a man in his late 20s pretending to be significantly younger saw him walk out on the Rollers at the height of their success in 1976. The fact that their manager, Tam Patton, was a thieving paedophile probably didn’t help matters much either. Longmuir would rejoin the Rollers and various side projects on and off for the following 40 years despite failing health. He dies aged 70 and was a unique hit for theme outfit Sid And Marty Coffin. Speaking of which, the theme team league is now live. Check it out over there *gestures to the right of your screen*

i have no pulse and can't scream

Harlan Ellison was a popular DDP pick back in 2011 thanks to comments he made at the end of the previous year that he didn’t know how much time he had left. Well, the answer was eight years. Ellison probably would have delighted in annoying deadpoolers though: the sci-fi writer was notoriously ornery, with a list of enemies longer than his bibliography. The man himself said his job in life was to “always keep the soup boiling”, be that through his stint as a writer on “Star Trek” (he hated Gene Rodenberry) or the classic dystopian tale “I Have No Mouth and Must Scream”. The soup has now gone off the boil aged 84, and three teams cash in.

Another miserable cunt from the world of geek culture joins Harlan in the afterlife, in the shape of Steve Ditko. Ditko was the co-creator (although some would suggest the genesis was far from a 50/50 split) of Spider-Man with Stan Lee. While Stan went on to be the kindly grandfather of comicbooks, appearing in Hollywood blockbusters and getting beaten by his carers, Ditko shrank into hermitdom. He shunned any media interest, refused to do interviews and instead tried to bring about an objectivist revolution via the medium of drawing superhero stories. He died aged 90 and was a unique hit for And Yet You Had Space for Sinead O'Connor.

Peter Firmin first started working with Oliver Postgate in 1958. Over the next 30 years they would create some of British TV’s most-loved children’s shows: “The Saga of Noggin the Nog”, “Pogle’s Wood”, “The Clangers” and, perhaps most importantly, “Bagpuss”. The “saggy, old cloth cat, baggy, and a bit loose at the seams” was voted children’s TV show of the millennium in a 1999 BBC poll, and still lives on today in the backpacks of twee sixth formers studying art. Firmin has now given a big yawn and settled down to sleep aged 89, becoming a unique hit for BBC Heaven.

Talk about having a shit run of luck. Henry Butler was born into poverty in the Calliope projects of New Orleans. He then developed glaucoma at the age of 4, blinding him for life. He refused to let this get him down though, and became a highly respected and much sought-after pianist, mixing everything from calypso to chamber music into his own instantly recognisable style. Then Hurricane Katrina came along, destroyed his home, piano and compendium of piano notation in braille. Then he got stage 4 cancer and died aged 69. I mean, that’s a man who shouldn’t buy a scratchcard. A Pelican in the Wilderness get the unique hit, a welcome relief after a run of unfortunate QO misses.

dunlop tired

You all know how rare unnatural hit bonuses are on the DDP, but this edition we can bring you not one but two. William Dunlop came from a family of motorcyclists. His father, Robert Dunlop, died in a practice session for the North West 200. His uncle, Joey Dunlop, died while leading a 125cc race in Estonia. You can see where this is going. Big Will sustained fatal injuries in a practice session for the Skerries 100 in Dublin, dying aged 32. You Dirty Rotten Swine, You Deaded Them! get a unique hit, an unnatural death bonus and a captain hit.

Unique, unnatural and captain all in one? Impressive? Have another. Maulana Fazlullah became head of the Movement for the Enforcement of Islamic Law in 2002 after the jailing of his father-in-law, Sufi Muhammad. However, this wasn’t enough of a climb up the corporate ladder for our man, and in 2013 took over as leader of the Taliban in Pakistan. His most notable act was the 2014 Peshawar school massacre, when 132 schoolchildren and 17 teachers were butchered by his forces. Fazzy must have spent the next four years keeping an eye out for drones, but obviously wasn’t paying much attention one night in June and has now been blown into 750 separate pieces aged 43 (or 44, depending on your source). See You In Hell claim the triple-bonus and win player of the month on one hit.

Nicknamed “Puppi”, Gudrun Himmler was only legitimate child of the Reichsfuhrer himself, Heinrich Himmler. Whereas the children of prominent nazis, such as Martin Bormann Jr, often devoted their lives to apologising and trying to make amends for their parents’ atrocities, Puppi revelled in her image as a “Nazi princess”. She would never discuss the Holocaust with the media and instead became heavily involved with the group Stille Hilfe, which offered support to former SS officers who found themselves being prosecuted for war crimes. Most considered it a neo-Nazi front group. Himmler died in relative obscurity, with her death taking a month to make the news pages, aged 88. Noah Reason and the Youth in Asia get the unique.

List of the Lost - Latest Entrants

Mien Schopman-Klaver, Lindy Remigino, Michael Lapage

List of the Missed - Latest Entrants

Nikolai Volkoff

Player(s) of the Month - June

See You In Hell - 32 points

Latest News

Jerry Lawler's son, Brian Christopher, hangs himself in prison after "The King" refuses to pail his bail. That's gotta be the worst decision he's made since he [deleted on legal grounds]... George HW Bush's heart doctor gets gunned down in broad daylight. Will Bush Sr do a roll-by in revenge? ...

Further Information

Rules & Scoring

E-mail Spade Cooley with any questions/comments about the DDP:


Derby Dead Pool is hosted by The Man In Black with contributions from Big-Iain, Rude Kid, Siegfried Baboon, Octopus of Odstock, WEP 2.0 - World's Eternity Prophet Reloaded, The Grey Horde, Thomas Jefferson Survives, Bibliogryphon, David Quantick's Showbiz Pals, Dickie's Gone the Way of the Dinosaurs & The End Of The World As We Know It
[DDP 2018]

Current Year

Who's dead so far?
List of the Lost
List of the Missed
A to Z list of teams
A to Z list of celebrities
Drop Forty
Theme Team League
The Obituary Vault
Last Year
Golden Slumbers
(168 points, 16 hits)


A brief history of dead pools
DDP stats & facts

Previous winners

David Quantick's Showbiz Pals (4)
David Quantick's Showbiz Pals (3)
David Quantick's Showbiz Pals (2)
David Quantick's Showbiz Pals
The Living End (3)
The Living End (2)
Octopus of Odstock
 Tonight, Matthew, I'm Going To Be Badly-Torn Boy
The Living End
Meet Your Maker (2)
Meet Your Maker
Fallen Sparrow
Otis, You Want A Treat?
Whittaker's Choice
MT Graves
Drunkasaskunk (2)
Nick J (2)
Nick J