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Running blind, but sights set on a cure

As an ultramarathoner, Norma Bastidas is used to running long distances, but Thursday’s Run for Sight may have been one of her more challenging races.

As an ultramarathoner, Norma Bastidas is used to running long distances, but Thursday’s Run for Sight may have been one of her more challenging races.

While five kilometres isn’t difficult for Bastidas, racing with a blindfold was.

“I didn’t even know if I was going to finish,” she said. “I (did it) to get a sense of what my son goes through sometimes.”

Bastidas’ son Karl, 14, was diagnosed with cone rod dystrophy, a condition that causes vision loss. She said running for the first time without vision was “terrifying,” however friend and local entrepreneur Brett Wilson guided Bastidas.


“It was a lot of fun but it was really empowering for Norma because for probably the first 100 yards, she was gripping me so tight and she was holding back,” said Wilson, star of the TV show Dragons’ Den.

“I’m glad that I could play small role, and it was my daily exercise as well.”

Olympic and Paralympic athlete Brian McKeever, who suffers from vision loss, also participated in the race, claiming first place.

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