Funny how it goes, just when you think nothing unusual could happen, it does! It was late August of 2014, when World Champion Stone Skipper Russ “Rock-Bottom” Byers was setting up his video camera on the banks of the Allegheny river, in preparation for filming a demonstration with another up-and-coming professional Skipper.
To get the best angle and check the field of view Russ asked his friend Max “BATMAN” Steiner [of Grosse Pointe Woods, MI] to Skip-one for the camera. With that, Max pick out a nice looking rock from the lake Erie stash and whipped it onto the waters, hurling himself into the history books.
WOW! Russ exclaimed “that one was really good, maybe the best”. And so they spent the next two-plus hours trying to replicate that huge toss. Each man skipped rock after rock until their arms were sore and the rocks were all tossed. When they got back to the Rock-Bottom Laboratory [RBL] they came to find that Batman had indeed skipped a new world record of Sixty-five  skips. This was accepted as the new Guinness World record in November of 2014.
Russ was ecstatic that he’d captured it on video, and yet somehow mildly disappointed to find that he’s now lost the World Record to this young skipper. Rock Bottom held the previous record at 51 skips according the folks at Guinness. Since July 2007, when he cast the stone that shattered the previous world record of 40 skips held by Kurt “Mountain-man” Steiner of Emporium PA [no relation].
As you can imagine, with this astounding feat, “BATMAN” discovered what it means to have your phone “Blow-up”. Max has been on hundreds of interviews and talk shows around the world. “Yeah, it’s kinda cool” said Max. “But I feel sorta bad for taking the record from Russ, because he’s been so helpful to me.” Max skips regularly on Mackinac Island, and has recently skipped in the International Tournament of Champions called: Wilmer T. Rabe Pro-Invitational.
Max was presented with the certificate on November 26. He is currently a student at the University of Nevada Las Vegas, and was recently part of a documentary called, “Skips Stones for Fudge”, all about current stone-skipping. The film is planned to be released at festivals and possibly television in 2015. “Batman” is a handle Max picked up as a youngster while participating in the Mackinac events. “It’s been lucky, so I ‘m stickin with it” Max said.