There are few better examples of the rate of progress in business aviation than those seen this week, when Bombardier met with the heads of the Federation Aeronautique Internationale (FAI) and the U.S.’s National Aviation Association (NAA) to celebrate the setting of a world record that has already been broken.

As reported in ShowNews, Bombardier’s Global 7500 flew from Singapore to Tucson, Arizona, in February, to set a new world record for the city pair. The following month, a Gulfstream G650ER flew between the same cities in 44 minutes less. Bombardier is not just taking this on the chin: it’s coming out fighting.

“We understand that their aircraft flew on high tailwinds,” says Bombardier’s director of communications, Mark Masluch. “But we’re allowed to celebrate the days we have the record! And we’re definitely proud to have two other records on the 7500 – Los Angeles to New York, and New York to London. Those records will be difficult to break.”

“As of right now, this is the record,” says the NAA’s president and CEO, Greg Principato. “We’ve received the dossier for [the G650ER flight] but we haven’t got gone through it and certified it yet.”

Masluch also stressed that the conditions under which the 7500 flew were deliberately intended to showcase the aircraft in a conventional operational role.

“We tried to really replicate real-world conditions when we attempt to set a record on our aircraft,” he says. “From Singapore to Tucson we carried about 800 lb of passengers and their baggage, and the same for London/New York and Los Angeles/New York.”

Still: with Gulfstream president Mark Burns claiming here on Monday that “We can pretty much set a record on any day that we want” with the 650, has the concept become an irrelevance? Far from it, says the FAI – healthy competition for headline-making firsts all helps to keep aviation innovative and aids sustainability.

“The concept of world records is based on sporting codes and rules, and it’s been driving innovation all the time,” says the FAI’s secretary general, Susanne Schödel. “The rules remain the same, but innovation is driven within the framework of rules. We’re happy to see that, because improving performance means also talking about less use of fuel, about being more environmentally friendly, and more sustainable. This is all playing a part.”