Blue Peter Record
On the 5th of September 2019, Guinness World Records launched the 2020 Guinness Book of Records. To celebrate the launch, they asked if I would attempt to break another record live on the kids TV show Blue Peter, on BBC One. I only had three weeks to decide on what record to attempt and intensively practice to be in with a chance of breaking it on the show. Out of all the records, this was particularly challenging since it requires a lot of mental agility with every chance I will get it wrong instead of right!
After the cards were shuffled and verified by Guinness World Records, 18 children took a playing card from the deck. I then had 10 seconds to look through the remaining cards to gauge what cards had been picked out of the deck, then 1 minute to guess what card each child had in their hand.
During rehearsals the practice went terribly, which really knocked my confidence and put me on edge for the live show. However, I pushed through the nerves and thankfully nailed it on the official attempt!
The journey to break the record for the Most Magic Performed Blindfolded in 1 Minute was a particularly epic one and resulted in 3 different attempts to break the record.
Following the book launch, Guinness World Records suggested that I come back to their headquarters in London and attempt the record for a third time. As part of this they also did an interviewed about my Guinness World Records journey and the record/interview can now be found on their YouTube channel. This attempt pushed the trick count to 24, where the record currently stands to this day and as an added bonus, the cap in bottle trick now resides in the Guinness World Records cabinet of fame!
GWR Internal Book Launch
In March 2019, Guinness World Records asked if I would be guest speaker for the launch of their 2020 book campaign. I saw this as an opportunity to break the blindfold record again and as this was for Guinness World Records themselves, I felt extra pressure to achieve this record in one attempt! Thankfully all went well and I finished by producing a copy of the 2020 book cover as the surprise ending, which got a great reaction! As a result, I broke the record for a second time, pushing the trick count from 20 to 23.
Britain’s Got Talent
The first attempt was at Judges Auditions on Britain’s Got Talent 2018. Compared to the wind tunnel/skydive titles which allowed 4 attempts to break the record, for BGT there was only 1 chance to nail it. The record stood at 18 tricks in the 1-minute time frame and I intended to push this to 20 tricks.
Walking on stage to an audience of 3000 and judges Simon Cowell, Amanda Holden, David Walliams and Alesha Dixon is an experience I will never forget. Towards the end of the attempt, the noise from the audience cheering was so loud, I couldn’t hear the music and nearly missed the end of the track! Taking the blindfold off and seeing everyone on their feet going crazy is a moment I will cherish forever and while I didn’t get past Judges Auditions, I hold the accolade for being the only person in 2018 to officially break a record on the show.
The success of the wind tunnel record caught the attention of Guinness World Records and they asked if I’d like to do the skydive record as part of GWR Day 2016. Since the start of the skydive project, I’d wanted to try and make the record go viral and this opportunity presented the biggest chance of making that dream happen.
Choosing the right location came with its own challenges since British airspace is protected at various altitudes depending on what flight paths are overhead. Most skydiving airfields are able to go to a maximum height of 12,500ft, however GoSkydive in Salisbury can to go up to 15,000ft and since they specialise in tandem skydives, they proved to be the best hosts for the record attempt.
To get the record, I had to successfully perform 10 tricks I had 3 attempts to get the record due to the intermittent rain/wind throughout the day. The first attempt went terribly as I hadn’t factored in how cold it would be when we left the plane (-20c). The second attempt went better although I still didn’t hit the required amount to break the record. Thankfully the third attempt was a success resulting in a total of 11 tricks.
Wind Tunnel Record
Since skydiving is not a cheap hobby and I had no prior experience of the sport, during my research I discovered iFly Indoor Skydiving in Milton Keynes and started visiting to practice for the skydive record. While there, the manager Andy Godwin got wind of what I was up to and decided to challenge me to set another record for performing magic in the wind tunnel.
Once Guinness World Records had approved the record application they confirmed a minimum of 8 magic tricks needed to be successfully performed in order for it to be an official record.
With this in mind, on the 5th May 2016 I attempted the record in front of a selection of 6 specialist witnesses and a room full of eager onlookers.
This is how the record unfolded…