Competing August 3rd in Chicago, Jeffrey Weigl swept each category, earning gold medals in the 220 wpm Literary leg, the 230 Legal Opinion leg, as well as the 280 wpm Question & Answer portion, all while tallying 39 less combined errors than his nearest competitor.
The Edmonton court reporter has just been crowned champion at the National Court Reporters Association’s annual speed contest.
The contest, held every year in the U.S., pits court reporters against each other in a series of tests to see who can take the most accurate transcriptions of dictations. In other words, Weigl is the Usain Bolt of stenography.
Three tests are taken. The first is a literary reading — usually a speech — read at 225 words a minute. The second is similar but involves far more legal jargon — much like the judgment delivered at the end of a trial — at 235 words a minute.
Finally, writers try their best to keep up with a question-and-answer testimony involving two people read at a lightning-fast 280 words a minute.
For comparison, the average person speaks at around 160 to 180 words a minute.
This year, Weigl won all three categories to take home the prize, becoming the first Canadian to do so since the competition began in 1909.