Southern Ocean Exploration, One Woman at a Time

Imagine a dream so big that you won’t stop until you achieve it. Now imagine the pull of that dream being so strong that you make not just one, but three world record attempts within 12 months. Sailor Lisa Blair is mixing adventure with citizen science as she prepares to tackle the Southern Ocean, one of the most challenging ocean environments anywhere in the world. With storms, huge waves, snow and ice to navigate as well as the well-known roaring forties, furious fifties and screaming sixties, it’s certainly not an area many dare to tread, especially not alone. However, for Blair it’s much more than just a chance to chase a dream and challenge her endurance.

Citizen Science and a Post-It Note Community Campaign

Climate Action Now is a community campaign tackling climate change, one small post-it note at a time.  Through the Climate Action Now campaign, Blair promotes and encourages individuals to take positive action against climate change through focusing on solutions rather than on the problem. After inviting the community to write post-it notes with their best environmental action plans, Blair digitally transferred these messages onto a hull wrap that encases her yacht.

The goal of the campaign is simple: inspire people to make positive changes in their life to support our environment.​

The Southern Ocean is one of the most remote places on earth, meaning that climate data from the region is very limited. With plans to install an Ocean Pack Race Research unit on her yacht, Blair will be able to capture key data on CO2, salinity levels, temperature and barometric pressure. She also plans to couple this unit with a micro plastics sampler, allowing scientists and researchers to further study the ocean.

Laurus Projects Partners with Lisa Blair

The team at Laurus Projects felt a deep connection with Blair and her mission and have come on board as a sponsor for this incredible journey. With a shared passion for creating a positive impact on the community, it is hoped that Blair’s journey will inspire the next generation to become passionate about saving our environment and climate.

The Journey

Lisa is setting off this December to sail solo, non-stop and unassisted around Antartica. This is Blair’s second attempt at the record. In 2017 she was one day ahead of the men’s record, when on day 72, three quarters of the way around Antarctica, she suffered a dismasting (where the rigging wire snaps) in a storm. At more than 1000 nm from land, Blair was able to motor into Cape Town, South Africa after gaining assistance with fuel from a passing container ship and building a jury rig.
It took Blair two months to get back on the water, but she completed the trip and became the first woman to sail solo and unassisted around Antarctica with only one stop.

This time, she aims to challenge a record help by Fedor Konyukhov which was established in 2008 of 102 days, 1 hour, 35 minutes, 50 seconds. Konyukhov completed this record racing the Antarctica Cup Ocean Race and is the only person to have raced this “racetrack”. To challenge the record, Blair will conform to the race rules but will complete her journey separate to the race. The rules Blair will follow dictate departure from Albany in Western Australia and that she is to sail between the latitudes of 45 S and 60 S.
It is a total distance of 14 000 nm, with an aim to complete it within 90-100 days.