With the help of Toyota and a very brave instructor, a British man got the chance to do the impossible.
Dr. Amit Patel tragically lost his sight in 2013. Prior to that, he was an emergency first response driver. Losing his sight also meant giving up one one his life's greatest pleasures: driving.
Toyota gave Dr. Patel the chance to slide behind the wheel once again, in a specially prepared Toyota GT-86 with one very brave instructor at his side. This was no Sunday drive, either: Dr. Patel was to lap the famous Top Gear Test Track.
Dr. Patel's indomitable spirit is on full display in this downright inspiring video. He doesn't pull any punches about what a struggle it has been to lose what is arguably the most important of the five senses. He describes the heartbreaking desperation of hoping that his sight would return as quickly as it had gone.
At the same time, however, he's got an amazingly positive attitude, and describes in loving detail the experience of driving a car while blind. In a car like the GT-86 – a true driver's car – he says he's able to feel everything; that the car is communicating with him. He describes the feeling as being like floating.
A Top Gear fan himself, he says that he, like everyone else who has ever watched the show, thought to himself "I can do better than that!" when celebrities lapped the Top Gear Test Track. His initial goal was to come in under the two minute mark. In the end, he did substantially better, crossing the line in one minute and 46 seconds. That's quite an impressive time for anyone, let alone a blind person.
Dr. Patel cites his two and a half year old son as a huge influence. He wants to show his son that anything is possible, and that if he can do it, anyone can. Today, he's an influence on all of us.
Source: Toyota UK on YouTube