Paper airplane throwing world-record holder from Bellevue unseated in controversial flighton May 22, 2012 @ 11:16 am (Updated: 1:34 pm - 5/22/12 )
Joe Ayoob and John Collins line up for their record-breaking paper airplane flight. (Image: YouTube)
One of the men currently listed in The Guinness Book of World Records for longest paper airplane flight didn't actually throw the plane, and that doesn't sit well with the former world-recorder holder in the category who is from Bellevue.
"Competitive paper airplane flying had always been, in my mind, what can one person do with one piece of paper," 23- year-old Stephen Kreiger of Bellevue tells The Wall Street Journal.
Two people now share credit for the longest flight as Guinness acknowledged both plane designer John Collins and plane thrower, ex-Cal quarterback Joe Ayoob.
Plane designer Collins tells 97.3 KIRO FM's Ross and Burbank Show he didn't even expect to be named in the record book.
"The thrower and I had talked about this, and my family and all my friends knew that in all likelihood I was not going to be in the Guinness Book of World Records. I just wanted to make a plane go that far," said Collins. "I was really flattered when Guinness decided to include me in the record."
Kreiger, of Bellevue, had held the record since 2003, from a 207 foot flight he threw when he was 15. Kreiger told WSJ that he worked for an entire summer on his throwing arm before his attempt.
At age 51, Collins said he faced different challenges. "If the haters are 51-years-old, they would understand trying to throw that plane with my shoulder."
He sought out to find a stand-in, and after testing multiple QBs, settled on Ayoob. The pair worked together for 18 months to get things just right, Collins said.
"Stephen [Kreiger]'s point is that it is not in the spirit of traditional paper airplane competition, but I just have to defer to Guinness on what they think is tradition, and what they think is in the spirit of their own rules," said Collins. "The way I approached this thing is, world records are there for people to innovate and get past."
In fact, he's not opposed to others using his design to go after the world record themselves.
"Please fold my plane."
Collins makes the design available at his website thepaperairplaneguy.com.
"I'm encouraging people to go there, learn how to fold my plane and beat my record. I want to know how far my plane goes," said Collins.
Watch the paper airplane's record-breaking flight:
By JAMIE GRISWOLD, MyNorthwest.com Editor
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