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Blind man tackles the road course at Daytona on his own

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Filed under: SUV, Etc., Technology, Ford

Mark Riccobono's blind lap of Daytona - Click above for high-res image gallery

Another year, another Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona champion. Something interesting happened before the prototypes took to the track, though, when a Ford Escape Hybrid took on the 1.5-mile road course. The driver, Mark Anthony Riccobono, didn't break any speed records... but he did successfully maneuver the Escape without the help of a very crucial driving aid - vision.

Riccobono is blind, and with the help of non-visual technology, he completed the Daytona road course. Beyond simply making lefts and rights, Riccobono also had to avoid a variety of obstacles. Some were stationary while others were thrown randomly from the back of a van. Riccobono avoided them all, and then he passed the van before crossing the finish line.

The event marks the first time a blind person has driven a vehicle around a course without the aid of a sighted person. It was a major milestone for the Blind Driver Challenge, which aims to improve blind-interface technology. Check out the press release after the break.

Gallery: Mark Anthony Riccobono's blind lap of Daytona

[Source: National Federation of the Blind | Images: Terry Renna and John Raoux/AP]Continue reading Blind man tackles the road course at Daytona on his own

Blind man tackles the road course at Daytona on his own originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 31 Jan 2011 16:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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