Riveting world record bid by engineer

EASILY the most riveting target in the famous Guinness Book of Records is set to be broken at Shannon Airport today by an Aer Lingus engineer celebrating his 50th birthday.

Conor McCarthy from Adare is aiming to shatter the record set at Workman Clarke & Co by a shipbuilder in Titanic-era Belfast.

In order to consign the 93-year-old record to the history books Mr McCarthy will have to hand-drill 12,345 rivets into a metal mosaic.

He and his teammate, Mike Fitzsimons, will take on the challenge at 9am today and aim to complete the eight-foot wide 100kg aluminium work of art by 5pm.

The design of the mosaic is the original emblem of his employers, Aer Lingus, with the swans’ wings carrying the green shamrock.

Mr McCarthy happened to be born on the 25th anniversary of the incorporation of Aer Lingus, so today both he and the airline will have their birthdays.

“All the stars lined up together. I said I had a few too many Christmases behind me so I will be too old to try it in 10 years’ time. And instead of just doing something on a sheet of plain metal I said it was better to try and create a work of art that would be there forever,” he said.

In order to get the record bid in place Mr McCarthy pre-drilled the metal sheet.

The thousands of gold-coloured rivets had to be sourced from Hamburg, France and America to airline specifications.

The challengers require adjudicators from the Irish Aviation Authority and the oversight of the newly elected Senator and Mayor of Clare, Tony Mulcahy.

If the drilling duo are successful they will break two records — the one set by Jay Muir in Belfast in 1918 and another for the world’s largest rivet mosaic.

Mr McCarthy is using his attempt to raise funds for St Gabriel’s special needs school in Dooradoyle in Limerick.

* Donations will be accepted at mycharity.ie/events/conormccarthy guinnessbookrecord and in AIB bank sort code 935093 and account number 05458091.


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