Miami Man Wins National Memory Competition

Nelson Dellis becomes two-time winner.

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A Miami man who climbs mountains to call attention to Alzheimer's disease has won a national memory competition held in New York City.

It's the second year in a row that 28-year-old Nelson Dellis of Miami has won the USA Memory Championship.

He also broke a record for memorizing 303 random numbers in five minutes, besting the previous record of 248 numbers in five minutes. He set that record last year.

Dellis graduated from the University of Miami and once told NBCMiami he practices every day.

He can memorize a list of 80 random words in 5 minutes and a deck of cards, in order, in 45 seconds, and once returned to the UM campus to teach current UM students his tricks.

Dellis' method involves association. For numbers, he designates different people, places or things with each pair of digits. For instance, the sequence 244231 looks like 6 numbers to you and me. But for Dellis, those numbers represent the phrase "Kobe Bryant smoking a banjo."

About 50 people competed in Saturday's challenge of mental skill.

Among the challenges, competitors had to recall 99 names and faces, a 50-line unpublished poem and 200 random words.

The competition, now in its 15th year, was founded by a former IBM executive to promote the capabilities of the human brain.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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