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The Last Word With Matt Cooper

Being The First Woman And Youngest Person To Row Solo Across The Indian Ocean

Sarah Outen is a British athlete, adventurer and motivational speaker. She was also the first woman,...
Sarah Stacey
Sarah Stacey

6:38 PM - 17 May 2019



The Last Word With Matt Cooper

Being The First Woman And Youngest Person To Row Solo Across The Indian Ocean

Sarah Stacey
Sarah Stacey

6:38 PM - 17 May 2019

Listen to this episode



Sarah Outen is a British athlete, adventurer and motivational speaker.

She was also the first woman, and the youngest person, to row solo across the Indian Ocean and Pacific Ocean from Japan to Alaska.

As a child, Sarah says she was always sporty and adventurous.

She first heard about ocean rowing while studying at university, and this ultimately led to her journey across the Indian Ocean, followed by her 'London2London: Via the World' expedition.

Her father died while she was planning the first trip, which was when she decided to undertake it solo: "I decided I wanted it to be a memorial row to him."

It took Sarah three years to prepare for the first ocean crossing, and just over a year to plan her journey around the world.

She coped well with being alone for long periods of time: "I really enjoyed the solitude. I'm very comfortable in my own company."

However, she admits "there were some dark times when it wasn't certain what was going to happen."

One of the people she missed most was her wife Lucy, to whom she proposed while out on the Pacific Ocean.

Lucy was able to join her when she reached Canada, and they cycled together for a couple of months.

"That was wonderful to share the story with her, and it also helped me break up the rest of the journey in my head to feel, 'This is manageable, I can cope with being apart from her and make it all the way home.'"

Sarah joined us on The Last Word to tell her story. She will also be speaking about her adventures at the Lismore Immrama Festival of Travel Writing in Co. Waterford on 15 June.

Being The First Woman And Youngest Person To Row Solo Across The Indian Ocean

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Athlete Indian Ocean Rowing Sarah Outen

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