Photos: Blind runner races to 'make her disability an ability'


Rachel Hasting and Mike Fuith get ready.
1 Rachel Hastings and her running partner, Mike Fuith, get ready to run the marathon while taking cover from the morning rain. Fuith is married to one of Hastings' former teachers. 
The sun rises before the marathon.
2 The sun rises over 6th St. in downtown Minneapolis before the start of the race. It rained on and off throughout the day, with temperatures hovering around 60. 
A woman uses a poncho to stay dry.
3 A woman uses a reflective poncho to shield herself from the rain before the race. 
Runners gather to start the race.
4 Runners wait to start in front of U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis. There are three separate starting groups for 7,518 racers. 
Runners ditch their water cups.
5 Runners ditch their cups after a water stop in the middle of the marathon. 
The first marathon runners reach the 24-mile marker on Sunday.
6 Spectators watch as the first runners neared the 24-mile marker in St. Paul. 
Volunteers filled water cups for marathon participants from fire hydrants.
7 Fire hydrants supplied water, and lined trash cans stored it until volunteers handed it out to runners. 
Spectators play as marathon runners pass on Sunday along Summit Avenue.
8 Onlookers kick around a soccer ball alongside runners in St. Paul. 
Spectators wait at the finish line.
9 Spectators wait at the finish line. 
Rachel and Mike approach the finish line.
10 Holding hands instead of the rope, Hastings and Fuith run down the final stretch of the marathon. Hastings finished the race with a time of 4:12:32, well below the 5:00 she needed to qualify for the Boston Marathon. 
Rachel Hastings hugs her mother after the race.
11 Hastings hugs her mother after finishing the race Sunday. "We're fricking going to Boston! This is one of the best days of my life, honestly," Hastings said.