Made Arya Kencana
Denpasar. The organizer of a recent record-breaking attempt by a 15-year-old boy from Bali admitted on Wednesday that the record was not authenticated by Guinness World Records.
Gideon Hindarto, the father of memory champion Dominic Brian Hindarto and the event’s organizer, said that no representatives from Guinness World Records were present and that the man who was introduced as a Guinness representative was in fact only a witness.
“During the record-breaking attempt, there were no direct representatives from Guinness World Records,” Gideon told the Jakarta Globe.
“I must admit that the record has not been officially [recognized] by Guinness World Records. We are still gathering all the necessary requirements and it usually takes two months or more before there is an official authentication.”
The remarks were contrary to what the event coordinator told the media on Friday in Denpasar.
Dominic, Gideon claimed, set a new Guinness World Record in memorization, breaking a record that he previously set in August 2009.
Performing in front of 2,000 participants at a leadership conference, Dominic managed to memorize 84 non-binary numbers in under a minute, supposedly beating his earlier world record of 76 numbers.
It took him four attempts to top his earlier mark.
The event organizer identified a man named Bob Foster as a representative from Guinness World Records.
However, in a letter to the Globe, Michael Goulbourn, Guinness World Records’ legal and business affairs executive, said that “no such person works at Guinness World Records.”
Gideon said that Foster was only there as a witness since Guinness World Records did not have an Indonesian office. Foster, he said, is the president director of a local tuition center.
“[Foster’s] appointment is according to the policy of Guinness World Records. It states that if an official Guinness representative is not present, a witness can be appointed,” he argued.
“Another policy if an official Guinness representative is not present, a public notary can be appointed. [We did this] in Palembang previously,” Gideon said in reference to Dominic’s earlier record.
Dominic first gained recognition for his mental prowess at the age of five, when he became the youngest person in the country to memorize 100 numbers in under 12 minutes. That feat earned him a place in the Indonesian Museum of Records.
He is also recognized by the Record Holders Republic for being able to memorize 90 numbers in a minute and recite them in order, in reverse and at random.
In 2011, he represented Indonesia in the World Memory Championships in Guangzhou, China, and finished in third place.