Am I the Pusher of the “Conveyance”?

I registered for the Bolder Boulder today. I got to sign a special agreement. Here it is:


This Agreement is made between BolderBOULDER, Inc., the producer of the DICK’S Sporting Goods BolderBOULDER road race held on Memorial Day of every year in Boulder, Colorado, and the undersigned.

WHEREAS, the undersigned wishes to participate in the DICK’S Sporting Goods BolderBOULDER road race by pushing a disabled person in a wheelchair or “jogger,”? or by other similar means of conveyance (“Conveyance”?) and

WHEREAS the DICK’S Sporting Goods BolderBOULDER rules ordinarily prohibit such means of conveyance because of the danger they present to the disabled person and the other, approximately fifty thousand, people crowding the streets during the road race, and,

WHEREAS the BolderBOULDER, Inc. nevertheless wishes to permit the undersigned to participate in the race because of its goal of benefiting disabled people and allowing their participation to the maximum extent which is consistent with the safety of all participants in the event,

NOW THEREFORE, in consideration of the premises and the agreement set forth herein, it is agreed as follows:

1. The undersigned will be permitted to participate in the DICK’S Sporting Goods BolderBOULDER to be held on Memorial Day on May 26, 2008 and to use a “Conveyance”? to push a disabled person. BolderBOULDER, Inc. will select the walking wave in which the participant will start.

2. In order to assure the safety of others, the undersigned agrees to walk, not run, and to exercise extreme care in the handling of the Conveyance for the safety of the disabled person and other participants. The undersigned represents that he/she is familiar with the Conveyance and is able to operate it safely.

3. The undersigned acknowledges that, in the event he/she violates the provisions of this agreement or any other rules of the DICK’S Sporting Goods BolderBOULDER, he/she and the Conveyance will be removed from the racecourse.

Dated this _____ of ____, 2009.


Perhaps you are less confused than I am. Is this agreement meant only for able-bodied people pushing disabled people? Am I the pusher of my Conveyance? If I am, does clause number 2 mean I’ve agreed not to try to go fast? Does paragraph 4 sound like DICK’S Sporting Goods BolderBOULDER think they’re being really swell folks by even letting me in? Do you think the pro wheelchair racers sign this?

Elsewhere in the race materials it says, “DO participate in a wheelchair if you are prepared for the course distance and difficulty. Wheelchairs propelled by the race participant are recommended; motorized and electric wheelchairs are not permitted.” Now that sounds a little more rational. Perhaps the AGREEMENT dates from a more parochial time and nobody’s bothered to review it in a couple of decades. Or perhaps it was crafted solely for Dick Hoyt to sign (adult son Rick, of course, being “the disabled person” would not be expected to sign it), and overzealous workers are making everyone on wheels sign, just in case.

(And yes, I did notice that they are actually giving me permission to participate in last year’s race.)



  1. Ruth

    It is very confusing. Elizabeth (over at Screw Bronze) wrote about races she entered that had “wheelchair divisions” and rules that were open to various interpretations on what sometimes seemed like an “on the fly” way and this reminds me of it.

  2. Laurel


    Thank you, my head is now broken for the day.

  3. wheelchairdancer

    Because you signed it, I know they are serious. but seriously, are they serious? Boom. Head on lap.


  4. fridawrites

    Response: anger at them. A similar kind of separate agreement disabled people had to sign at the San Diego Zoo was ruled illegal by the courts.

    My guess is banning motorized wheelchairs/scooters is also illegal unless the course is dangerous for them (and I don’t mean because of people or disdainful attitudes, but because of road/path hazards). Participation should be allowed even if their racing doesn’t count since it’s not entirely self-propelled.

  5. fridawrites

    I.e., ADA provides equal access for you and for others, not equal access when people approve. No waivers required.

  6. Elizabeth

    I am confused myself, it sounds like they are trying to include a huge catagory of both self propelled recreational or racing wheelchair racers in not racing chairs, racing wheelchairs and then those who are assisted in being propelled, but all together? Does this mean you get to name your arms: Shelia and Grace will be propelling me this year! I don’t know it just seems bizaare but after I had to sign six pages to use a wheelchair handcycle, I will believe anything.

    I raced on Sunday, and there was not only the wheelchair racers in racing wheelchair but also a person being pushed in a type of chair. However, the standings show there was a female who was not in a ‘racing chair’ and thus, like me last year, considered not a ‘wheelchair racer’ (I consider going 5K anywhere to be a ‘personal challenge’, ‘race’ or otherwise), and told to be back in the pack, or at the front or both (that was before I was told that wheelchair people don’t have gender – they fixed that this year, now no wheelchair racers get awards!). In today’s paper the rankings for top males and females had those self propelled and those propelled by another runner combined, so a self propelled para would be #1, a racer with a light racing chair to push would be #2 while a person with MS doing a slow self propelled or a quad would be #3. Dunno – they make the rules, which aren’t in accordance with Wheelchair racing either, so I know they didn’t bother to check, even though ironically it is on the ‘Wheelchair racing circuit’ and had a paralympian.

    I totally wish you the best and would definately come down there and be a ‘conveyance’ (do I get a belt with that?), with you! Any place that keeps using the term, DICK in capital letters is a race I want to be a part of; “Is that the official wheelchair position, being of DICK?”

  7. weeble

    As a self propelling racer, I don’t even see how this applies to you. Perhaps it is something they would ask your husband to sign if you intend you have him assist you up the hills.

    What a crazy and confusing form. According to the 2nd clause, perhaps you should get out and walk, not run your chair?

    BTW, congratulations on joining this event anyhow. 6 months ago would have been a different story. I’m very happy for you and will be looking forward to hearing about your training and I’ll be cheering for you on race day!

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