Home > Expeditions & Adventures > ExWeb interview with Sarah Outen, a new challenge: Rowing, biking and kayaking around the world

ExWeb interview with Sarah Outen, a new challenge: Rowing, biking and kayaking around the world

February 27, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

In 2009 Briton Sarah Outen became the first woman to row across the Indian Ocean from Australia to Mauritius single-handed, unsupported and at only 24 years old, the youngest.

She announced her new challenge, ‘London to London: Via the World’ on a bicycle and a boat, starting March 2011.

Correne Coetzer caught up with Sarah to chat about the preparations, and the different physical challenges.

ExplorersWeb: You have announced your next expedition, ‘London to London: Via the World’. What is your game plan – means of travel, route?

Sarah: Starting in London in March 2011, I will attempt to circumnavigate the globe under my own power – by rowing boat, bike and kayak. I will be rowing the Pacific and Atlantic Ocean and cycling and kayaking all the bits in between. Beyond that, I’m not giving away too much more information on the route just yet as we are still refining details!

ExplorersWeb: Are there any land areas that you think would be a safety risk?

Sarah: Wherever there are vehicles, there is the danger of road traffic accidents – but this is true for being at home too. We are planning the route to avoid areas of political instability.

ExplorersWeb: Do you need specific permissions or permits for any countries?

Sarah: I’m currently speaking to lots of experts in the various countries about the logistics and legalities – this planning stage is easily the hardest part of the whole expedition.

ExplorersWeb: And the time frame? When do you plan to start and how long do you think it will take to gp around the world this way?

Sarah: I plan to start out from London in March 2011 and aim to arrive back in London 30 months/2.5 years later.

ExplorersWeb: Will you be heading home in between stages and then start off again from where you have stopped?

Sarah: No. The plan is to make a continuous circumnavigation – I shall not return home for the duration of the expedition.

ExplorersWeb: Cycling and rowing. Legs and upper body. When you are rowing you are not exactly keeping your legs fit, or cycling is not that much of an upper body workout. How will you manage be physical ready for either the land stage or ocean stage?

Sarah: The transition stages between each leg will be really important for ‘bulking up’, conditioning and preparing both physically and mentally for the next stage. I am working with some great teams to help me formulate the best plan for this.

ExplorersWeb: On the ocean you are more than capable to be self-sufficient. When you are cycling, how self-sufficient will you be?

Sarah: Just like the ocean I will be carrying all my gear on my bike – there will be no support vehicle or team following me. However, I will be stopping to buy food along the way, sometimes sleeping in hostels or with families and of course there is more scope to seek assistance (e.g. medical or technical) if I need it. My Logistics Manager will fly to each transition stage to help me.

ExplorersWeb: A big undertaking like this requires a competent home team.

Sarah: Indeed, this is all about the Team. I have a great crew on board already and will be recruiting more over coming months.

ExplorersWeb: What does your mother say about your new adventure?

Sarah: My Mum looks a bit scared when we talk about ‘London to London: Via the World’ – so she generally tries to move the conversation on! She is a big supporter of me chasing my dreams, however, and is a really important member of my team.

ExplorersWeb: Have you sold your Indian Ocean rowboat, Dippers, or are you going to get a new boat?

Sarah: I have sold Dippers and have commissioned Jamie Fabrizio (Global Boatworks) to build a new, bigger boat later this year.

In 2009 Briton Sarah Outen became the first woman to row across the Indian Ocean from Australia to Mauritius single-handed, unsupported and at only 24 years old, the youngest.

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