Memory-master Lara Nunan (Australia) has earned her third Guinness World Records title, this time for the most United States president portraits identified in 30 seconds.
The 16-year-old student from Sydney named 40 presidents, breaking the previous record of 28, set by Anay Singh in 2021.
Answering at a rate of over one per second, Lara named almost all of the United States’ 45 different presidents.
The two other record titles Lara holds are:
- Most Marvel characters identified in one minute - 88
- Most cartoon characters identified in one minute - 102
“I wanted to go for the hat-trick of getting three Guinness World Records titles in a 12-month period." – Lara Nunan
Lara’s preparation for her third record attempt was similar to the last two, although she was less familiar with the subject matter this time.
"As I am Australian, I was not familiar with some US presidents. I spent many hours practising how to say their names very fast," she said.
One of the biggest challenges Lara faced was the presidents’ long names, of which some proved to be quite a mouthful.
"This was different to my first two records where the characters had shorter names."
All answers given during the record attempt must include both the first and last names in order to be counted.
Unsurprisingly, Lara said her favourite US presidents are the ones with the "shortest and easiest" names, such as John Adams and John Tyler.
William Howard Taft and William Henry Harrison were among Lara’s least favourites because "they took the longest to pronounce quickly and clearly."
On the day of the attempt, the greatest challenge Lara faced was simply to keep calm and focussed, as she was confident in her ability to break the record.
"I know I can interpret things quickly and speak very fast."
Lara breezed past the previous record, improving upon it by a total of 12.
She performed at a similar speed during her last two record attempts, becoming the first person to break the one-answer-per-second barrier each time.
"It feels incredible to now have three Guinness World Records titles." – Lara Nunan
Lara’s top tip for achieving memorization records is to "practise consistently every day."
"Once you have memorized all the characters, it is important to practise them in random order consistently."
Lara already has her sights set on achieving a fourth Guinness World Records title later this year. She hopes to inspire other young people to challenge themselves and attempt a record of their own.
US presidents with Guinness World Records titles
Many of the presidents that Lara memorized also hold records of their own:
- John Tyler (POTUS 1841-1845) achieved the record of most children fathered by a US president, with 15.
- Abraham Lincoln (POTUS 1861-1865) was the first US president to be assassinated.
- Theodore “Teddy” Roosevelt (POTUS 1901-1909) was the youngest US president to assume office, aged 42 years 322 days when he assumed the presidency after the assassination of William McKinley.
- Harry S. Truman (POTUS 1945-1953) was the first president to be given a Secret Service code name - “General”.
- John F. Kennedy (POTUS 1961-1963) was the youngest elected US president at the age of 43 years 236 days. He was also the youngest US president to die in office and the most recent US president to be assassinated.
- Barack Hussein Obama (POTUS 2009-2017) was the first African-American president of the USA.
- Donald Trump (POTUS 2017-2021) has the most viewed Wikipedia page for a person (male), with 236 million views.
- Joe Biden (POTUS 2021-) is the oldest elected US president, aged 78 years 61 days on the day of his inauguration.