Redlands High School junior Ethan Gann, whose videos have been viewed millions of times on TikTok, says he broke two Rubik’s World Records, one of which is upside down.
If confirmed, it would join other internal record-breakers such as Norco’s Bert, the world’s tallest camel announced in 2005; Or a jet-skiing tour of 2018 behind a balloon on Lake Elsinore.
At the school’s Terrier Gym on Sunday, December 5, Jan said he broke records for “the fastest time to solve a spinning puzzle cube while manipulating” and “the fastest time to solve an inverted spinning puzzle cube” with times of 15.63 seconds and 8.91 seconds, respectively. The current recordings for the titles are 17.16sec and 10.81sec.
Amanda Marcus, a spokeswoman for Guinness World Records in North America, confirmed on Friday, December 10 that Ethan’s application had been received, and said officials were waiting to review the evidence.
“Once it has been received and reviewed, our records management team will confirm the success or failure of the registration attempt,” she wrote in an email.
She said the standard review process could take up to 15 weeks. With a quick process, it could take as little as five weeks, according to the company’s website.
To record this feat, Ethan and his family invited Redlands City Manager Charlie Duggan, City Councilor Gina Guzman Lowery, and Redlands Senior Manager Kate Van Leuven to be witnesses. Two of the PE teachers were official temps.
Ethan said he’s been solving Rubik’s cubes since he was in the fourth grade. His brother originally helped him solve the games, writing in an email “an achievement I didn’t think was possible, especially for my age at the time.”
After practicing each day, he was increasingly motivated as his times went down.
He said he usually trains often “so the biggest challenge when I signed up for that title was to be able to stop and solve the cube just as fast,” he said.
He practiced more scoring while juggling, using an app on his phone to scramble the cube.
“I’ve done this a thousand times to prepare for my attempt at that title,” he wrote.
His father, Ben Gan, said Ethan participated in regional and national cubing competitions, and at some point before the coronavirus pandemic ranked 130th worldwide in solving a 3×3 cube.
With competitions over due to COVID-19 safety measures, Ethan has gone online to connect with the cubing community. He created cubist magic tricks, combining cubism and circus work to build an audience.
Earlier this year he appeared on ‘Game of Talents’ and some of his videos on TikTok have garnered millions of views.
“This has been a journey as he has continued to reach new milestones beyond any of our expectations,” Ben Jan said in an email. “It was no special achievement that made us proud, but his continued passion, determination and creativity in reinventing new ways to enjoy this classic.”
After graduating from high school, Ethan said he plans to attend a four-year university and is currently considering studying chemistry, business, economics, and statistics.
Check it out on YouTube at youtube.com/channel/UCRasAEgkQkyVz1wJsW9qe5g or on TikTok @ethanjan3.14.