Girls Who Chat Podcast — Episode 1: Meet the Girls Who Dare

The Girls Who Dare is a team of women who, on May 31, 2021, set off from California to row 4,000 kilometres across the Pacific Ocean to Honolulu, Hawaii. Vicki Anstey, Orlagh Dempsey and Jane Leonard are taking on the challenge of a lifetime. Cited "the world's toughest endurance challenge," the race will see them rowing 24 hours per day and living on a 24 ft boat for the journey.

Join us on this journey as we tell the Girls Who Dare story through this podcast hosted by Avanade's Kevin Bassett over the next several months. Learn what inspired these three amazing women to take on this challenge and hear all about their new experiences, physical and emotional challenges, and what drives them to keep going both on land and on the boat.

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Kevin Bassett 

Kevin Bassett
Creative and Cross Transformation Marketing Lead, Global Campaigns, Avanade

As the Creative Lead, Global Programs and Campaigns, Kevin Bassett drives the creative strategy, development and execution of Avanade’s global marketing campaigns. Kevin is a transformational marketing and visual communications expert with a passion for driving engagement through meaningful brand experiences for clients and employees - generating awareness and creating demand. Kevin champions the immersive brand experience across all channels and defends visual and experiential consistency by empowering others to be brand ambassadors. Before joining Avanade in 2017, Kevin held creative leadership roles in several global companies and has worked in industries ranging from publishing, research, financial services, and technology in Canada and the US. Kevin also leads the Avanade Presents Podcast Series global podcast program.

Featured Guests

Vicki Anstey 

Vicki Anstey

Vicki Anstey is a leading fitness expert and founder of London’s original Barre and Ballet studio, Barreworks. She was one of the first women to star in the British show reality quasi-military training show, “SAS: Who Dares Wins.” After the show, a woman asked Vicki if she wanted to row the ocean with her, and though Vicki has a fear of deep water, she was in a place where she wanted to say yes to everything. It has been a challenging road just to get to the start of this journey: Vicki’s original team didn’t go forward with their row, her second team’s race was canceled in 2020 due to COVID-19, and this is her third rowing team. She has run five marathons in different countries and participated in other grueling sporting events and is ready for this next challenge.

Jane Leonard 

Jane Leonard

Jane Leonard has travelled and worked abroad and witnessed first-hand the injustices and lack of privilege that many women have to endure. She commanded respect in a largely male environment during a 10-year career in the Army and taken on every challenge presented to her, including representing her country playing rugby for England. From a young age, she has had a natural affinity for challenging perceived limits, and tells us she hasn’t run into anything with physical or mental demands that made her want to quit.

Orlagh Dempsey 

Orlagh Dempsey

Orlagh Dempsey is a physical education teacher and a leading figure in developing youth sport culture in the United Arab Emirates. She played in the Dubai 7s for several years and was awarded the accolades Players Player of the Year and Seven's Player of the Year. After she moved to the UAE, she set up the first women's rugby team in Ras Al Kaimah, an area with very few options for women to participate in sport. She has worked tirelessly to inspire other young women to take up sport, both in a professional capacity and in her community.


The Girls Who Dare Journey Hub

Avanade built the team hub which pulls information on the voyage like progress, route, weather, and biometrics.

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