Cree cuber sets sights on cubing World Championships
14-year-old holds Canadian National record and finished well at Montreal speed-cubing event
An up and coming Cree cuber from the James Bay region of Quebec continues toward his dream of setting a world record in cubing.
Walter Duff, 14, from Chisasibi, Que., already holds the Canadian record for solving what's called a Skewb in 1.83 seconds last year. A Skewb is a six sided, 3-D combination puzzle in the style of a Rubik's cube.
This past weekend, Duff made the podium in four separate competitions at the Montreal Limited Winter 2019 speed-cubing competition.
"To me it means I'm improving and I'm getting closer to my goal which is a world record," said Duff, of his results at the Montreal competition. "It was fun."
Love at first play
Duff first picked up his cousins' cube four years ago at the age of 10 and says it was love at first play.
"I tried it and I thought 'I should really get one of these,'" said Duff. "And my dad ended up buying me one."
By the age of 11, Duff set his sights on being able to solve a traditional Rubik's cube in less than 25 seconds, something his dad Warren Duff says he worked hard at and achieved.
"I knew that he was really serious about it and he kept watching videos on YouTube," said Warren. "Just a few months after he got [it] under 15 seconds."
Since then, Duff and his dad have been busy fundraising and travelling to competitions to allow the youth to follow his passion.
Warren says it's really important for him to support his son in his dream of setting a world record.
"I know how important it is to have a dream as a young kid," he said, adding his own parents weren't able to fully support his own dreams of playing baseball.
"My parents didn't have the money to support me in my dream."
The father and son are now turning their sights on fundraising to get Duff to the World Cubing Association's World Championship July 11-14 in Melbourne, Australia.
Duff is thankful for the support he has received from many in the Cree Nation.
"I wouldn't have gone this far without all that support. So thank you everyone," Duff said.
Duff and his dad have set up a YouTube page to share videos of his competitions.
Warren says if they can get 10 of his videos on YouTube to have 500 or more views each, Duff might be able to get a sponsorship to help with the costs of travel.