High Five Events announces the return of the Visually Impaired (VI) Runner Division for the 2018 Austin Marathon®. The Visually Impaired Runner Division will highlight these athletes, work with the athletes and their guides to provide a safer race experience, and adhere to guidelines set forth by the United States Association of Blind Athletes.
The 2018 Austin Marathon will build upon a successful launch of the division in 2017 by working with athletes and local families to provide homestays if needed, putting together a pre-race dinner where athletes and guides can meet and talk strategy, and creating an opportunity for a VI running team to be created.
William Greer is in his second coordinator for the Austin Marathon’s VI Runner Division. Greer is also the Film Festival Director for the Coalition of Texans with Disabilities and an accomplished VI endurance runner. Greer has completed numerous events ranging from the mile to ultra marathons. Greer ran the 2017 Austin Marathon in 4:06:31 while coordinating the VI Runner Division’s first year. Assisting him will be Daniel Craven, an accomplished runner himself and guide for numerous visually impaired athletes.
“We are continuing the success of the first year by inviting more visually impaired runners to the 2018 Austin Marathon and growing the division’s offerings,” said Greer. “Having a pre-race dinner will give VI runners and guides the opportunity to meet beforehand in a more relaxed setting and build a deeper bond leading up to race day.”
Athletes registering for the Austin Marathon’s Visually Impaired Runner Division will go through the same registration process and select either Visually Impaired Athlete or Guide when prompted. VI athletes will then select their classification; guides will select “Guide.” Classifications are B1, B2, and B3 and are determined by the United States Association of Blind Athletes. Upon successful registration, runners need to send their classification certification to Greer, firstname.lastname@example.org. The certification can come from a doctor or low vision specialist. Athletes that have questions or are looking for more information can contact Greer.
“Year One of the VI Runner Division was a success with William at the helm and we will build upon that great experience,” said Stacy Keese, co-owner of High Five Events. “There are athletes of all abilities who come to Austin and we want them to feel welcome and have the best race weekend experience possible.”