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Blind Navigators Lead Car Rally


Around forty blind and sight-impaired navigators will guide Wellington Car Club drivers through a two-hour route around Wellington on Sunday 28 May.

The rally leaves the Masonic Lodge in Ohariu Road, Brooklyn at 10.30am and is a social event celebrating its 26th year of joint 'fun' with the Royal New Zealand Foundation for the Blind.

Event convenor, Jeanne Malthus says the rally has become very popular with Wellington Car Club members and the navigators from the Foundation for the Blind.

"It's a real challenge for both the drivers and their avigators," says Ms Malthus.

"The navigators are provided with Braille maps of the area the route goes through, as well as four or five clues to help guide them around the course.

"The course is a complete secret until the day of the event and the teams are competing to complete the route, using all the clues, before the two hours are up.

"The winners are the ones to follow the course accurately and reach the finish line first."

The course takes spectators and teams on a circuitous route back to the Masonic Hall starting point - where entertainment and a light luncheon will be provided while results are being collated. Cups and trophies will be presented to the winning team and the runners- up.

Ms Malthus says the event is indebted to the support of,

* The Wellington Community Trust (and it's Chairman Bill Brien)

who are the sponsors,

* Wellington Car Club past-president and enthusiastic organiser

of previous rallies

Eddie Conroy - this year's (sighted) guest navigator,

* Wellington Car Club current president and course 'plotter'

Stephen Marks,

* Braille map developers Elisabeth and Ian Brown, and Ron and

Norma Whitt,

* RNZFB MC for the event, Gary Veenstra.

"We are hoping that members from the Car Club and the Foundation will enjoy themselves and if the weather is kind enough to treat us to a fine, dry Wellington day - there'll be smiles all round!" says Ms Malthus.



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