Local blind athlete to represent USA at 2013 ITU Paratriathlon World Championships in London


His selection is the culmination of lots of hard work. Now, he and his guide are raising money to get there in September.

When 30-year-old triathlete Brandon Adame hits the water, he's like any other triathlete -- looking for a personal best.

But Adame is a little different. He's blind

"I was like going, 'Dad, Dad, I think my eyes have gone completely black,'" he said.

Adame was born visually impaired and lost all of his vision when he was 15, but that never kept him from competing. He caught the triathlon bug in 2010.

"Bandon said, to my surprise, 'I'll give it a shot,'" father David Adame said. "And he was off to the races, so to speak, exactly."

Now, after a great qualifying race in Austin, Adame is on his way to a world competition to represent this country in the London ITU Paratriathlon World Championships in September.

With the help of a guide, Adame will swim 750 meters, or nearly half a mile, then onto a bike for 12.5 miles. Finally, he'll run a 5K, or 3.1 miles.

It's a big job, says his guide Ron Stitt.

"That's a big part of my job out there," Stitt said. "Not only to be his eyes and keep him safe out there but also to kind of pace him."

But getting there might be tougher than the training. The Adames are trying to raise $18,000. They've been selling T-shirts, accepting donations and getting the word out about this athlete's incredible story, hoping dollar by dollar and mile by mile that he makes his personal best a world best.

"I have to seriously ramp up all of the training that it will take for me to get the gold medal and $1,500," Adame said.

Adame needs to raise enough money get himself, his guide and his parents to London, plus baggage fees that include getting that tandem bicycle across the Atlantic and back, among other costs. They are selling Team Brandon shirts. You can find the shirts and more info about Adame's quest to represent the USA in London at www.gofundme.com/brandonlondon13.

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