Some speedcubing fans were left in tears after a prestigious and longstanding record was broken by American champion cuber Max Park, who took an astonishing 3.13 seconds to solve a 3x3x3 puzzle.
The 21-year-old smashed the previous benchmark of 3.47 seconds set by China’s Yusheng Du in 2018 to enter the Guinness Book of World Records at the Pride in Long Beach 2023 event in California. As the magnitude of his feat became clear, cheers erupted.
“The atmosphere was electric,” Park’s father, Schwan Park, told the Guinness book. “Everybody knew that he had broken the record, and I think partially everybody was in shock.
“The cubing world has been nothing short of ecstatic. Everybody was really waiting to see who was going to break that record. When Max did it, everybody was very happy for him.”
Schwan described the 3x3x3 record as the “crème de la crème” of cubing titles after his son added it to a host of others he holds, including the single solve and average solve world records for the 4x4x4 cube, 5x5x5 cube, 6x6x6 cube and 7x7x7 cube.
Park rose to global prominence after appearing in the 2020 Netflix documentary The Speed Cubers, in which he starred alongside fellow champion and good friend Feliks Zemdegs.
“A lot of Max’s fans, from the Netflix documentary, they all reached out and were very happy for him,” Schwan said. “A few people said they even cried.”
At the age of two, Park was diagnosed with autism, leaving his parents to search for ways to develop his fine motor skills. After he picked up a Rubik’s Cube, they realised the puzzle could help.
His parents began to understand the benefits of using cubing as a kind of therapy, and they used competitions as a means of teaching him social cues such as pointing, standing in line and waiting his turn.
“It was a giant playdate situation that we were going to exploit for Max’s social development,” Park’s father said in the Netflix documentary.
Guided by his motto “don’t think, just solve”, Park became the Rubik’s Cube world champion at the age of 15. A host of other titles followed, and he is now an official ambassador for Rubik’s.
Published: 2023-06-16 03:14:11