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Puzzle champion, Alma 9, wins first prize again

Gibraltarian Alma Belle Baharal, 9, won first prize in the Children B category (200 piece puzzle) at the 2024 Spanish National Championship which concluded last weekend.

She completed her 200-piece puzzle in a record time of 13 minutes and 40 seconds, smashing the previous all-time best from 2019, which was 17 minutes and 9 seconds.
Around 80 children participated in the championship overall.

“We are incredibly proud about this achievement, as it marks her third consecutive year being crowned Spain’s Puzzle Champion,” said her mother, Maya Bezalel Baharal, and father, Raanan Baharal.

The event took place over three days, from June 14 to 16, in Alcalá de Henares, Madrid, and was organised by Spain’s National Puzzle Association (AEPuzz).

“This year, Alma’s participation was particularly remarkable. Beyond her success in her own category, she was granted a special entry by the Spanish Puzzle Association into the prestigious adults' individual category, where the minimum age requirement is above 12 years,” said Mr Baharal.

“This was a significant milestone, as she competed alongside 400 other puzzlers, including the world champion and some of the fastest puzzlers in the world.”

“Alma achieved a phenomenal 19th place, completing her 500-piece puzzle in 59 minutes and 19 seconds, being the last puzzler to finish under the one-hour mark.”

“Her performance generated significant applause from fellow puzzlers and the audience,” he added.

Additionally, the young girl participated in the pairs category with her partner Manuel Espinosa Torres (from Valencia), and they achieved 13th place out of approximately 400 pairs, completing their 500-piece puzzle in 54 minutes and 29 seconds.

A link to the AEPuzz live stream of the individual competition where she completes her puzzle is available here: https://www.youtube.com/live/n6dqO_uyCso?feature=shared&t=5072

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