Montreal teen breaks national record for fastest Rubik’s cube solve while blindfolded

A teenager from Quebec has broken a national record for the fastest time to solve a Rubik’s cube with a blindfold.

In a plethora of color, Elliott Kobelansky turned a three-by-three cube in order in just 15.86 seconds – a period that includes studying the unsolved puzzle before putting on the blindfold.

“I’m fine,” he told CTV News Saturday afternoon, just hours after beating former world champion Jake Klassen’s previous record of 16.56 seconds.

“I’ve been working on this for a while, and it’s good to see all my training pay off,” he said.

Kobelansky first picked up a Rubik’s cube when he was six years old. After solving it for the first time, says his father, he was stuck.

These days, regular exercise can take up to five hours each day.

“It’s a lot of training,” said his father, Allan Kobelansky. “This is not something you can take lightly.”

For the blind category, there are no physical markings on the cube to help its looser. In other words, after Kobelansky looks at the distorted cube, he completely frees it from memory.

“In my head I have a kind of mental image of the cube. Not the colors, just an empty cube, and I see the movements when I make them,” he said.

“I have a method of turning the cube into letters, a string of letters that I memorize. Then, when I put on the blindfold, I have a way of turning those letters into movements on the cube to solve it.”

He says he was proud of the record and adds that he has been able to do it even faster at home.

He was one of dozens who competed in a competition organized by the World Cube Association. His talents have taken him far from home in Canada and south of the border. There are plans to compete in Korea next year.

Kobelansky said his success was made possible by the support of his father, who accompanied him to the event on Saturday.

“Basically, I told him that any event we can run to, we will go to without asking,” Allan Kobelansky said.

Several contestants told CTV on Saturday that they were happy to show up at the event after a two-year pandemic break.

Athletes of all ages applied, and no one was rejected due to lack of experience.

“Cubing is a very inclusive sport, everyone is invited to participate no matter how fast or slow you are. I do not feel different when I am relatively new”, says Maxence Leboeuf, a young cuber who took up the sport in December.

It is a philosophy shared by the event organizers.

“Competitions are meant to be fun for everyone,” said World Cube Association delegate Nathan Dwyer, who specializes in four times four and five times five categories.

“Even though it’s technically a competitive event, everyone is only here to support each other and have fun,” he said, adding that most people come to “compete against their own personal time rather than being murderous with others.” “

“It’s very welcoming and it’s very fun.”

The event continues on Sunday.

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