It happened on Saturday at Daytona International Speedway's race track.
During the pre-race activities, the American National Federation of the Blind (NFB) put Mr. Riccobono, (a blind person member of the federation, in charge of the technology and research) behind the steering wheel of a Ford Escape Hybrid.
The car was equipped with “nonvisual” technologies and allowed has Mr. Riccobono to make a 2.4km lap (while fixed and mobile obstacles had been put on the road to intensify the challenge) with no problem at all.
The car is equipped with “laser range-finding censors that convey information to a computer inside the vehicle, allowing it to create and constantly update a three-dimensional map of the road environment.” Then the computer sends informations to the driver via vibrating gloves indicating the direction, and a vibrating strip on which the driver sits indicates when to accelerate, slow down or stop.
Mr. Riccobono said: "The NFB's leadership in the Blind Driver Challenge™ has taken something almost everyone believed was an impossible dream and turned it into reality.