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Disaster recovery service provider Databarracks has announced the sponsorship of Lia Ditton’s attempt to be the first woman to successfully row the North Pacific Ocean.

Departing in early 2018, sailor and writer Lia Ditton will attempt to row approximately 5,500 nautical miles alone from Japan to San Francisco – a journey currently only two other people have successfully completed solo. Databarracks, along with YO! Company, is sponsoring the expedition.

Peter Groucutt, managing director at Databarracks, said: “When we heard about Lia’s challenge, we had to get involved. During her journey, the closest humans will be 90 miles overhead in the International Space Station. With 40-foot seas, 60-knot winds, whales and sharks, the Pacific Ocean is arguably the hardest stretch of ocean in the world. Not only is Lia taking on a huge physical challenge, but she’s hoping to inspire millions of women along the way to pursue their own dreams.”

Ditton, 36, commented: “I’ve sailed the equivalent of 8 laps of the globe, but this is the Everest of ocean rows and will be my greatest challenge yet. The voyage could take anywhere between 4 and 6 months and one of the biggest motivators for me is, and will be, the women that I’m rowing for. As part of my fund-raising initiative I’m asking people to dedicate miles to women that have inspired them in their lives. It’s these photos and stories that will get me out of my bunk and pulling the oars on the days when the rowing is really tough.”

As part of the campaign, Databarracks is creating an education pack which will be available for schools worldwide.

Groucutt concludes: “We are working closely with Lia to create an education pack that schools can use to get involved with the expedition. They can track Lia’s journey, read her blogs, send her messages and learn about the wider educational topics such as the weather, the wildlife and the oceans in a very interactive way.”