Rebecca Berger and Leanne Zrum are the only Canadians in the inaugural Great Pacific Race. Their goal is to raise awareness for Ocean Health Issues and funds for the Canadian environmental organization, The David Suzuki Foundation. They are also hoping to become the first Canadians to row the Pacific, and the first female pair to complete the history making race. Rebecca and Leanne will have sattelite communications during the row to update their blog and receive messages. You can keep up with their progress on their website, Facebook and Twitter (@RowThePacific).
Rebecca was inpsired to take on the Pacific 2014 challenge by five amazing women: Debra Searl (GB Premier Women’s Dragon Boat Team), Rachel Smith (GB Premier Women’s Dragon Boat Team) and Lin Griesel (GB Premier Women’s Dragon Boat Team), and Sarah Louise Duff (UTRC) have all rowed at least one ocean each. Beth Jackson (UTRC) who was a house-mate of Rebecca’s in the UK suggested that they do the Indian Ocean in 2010 but it wasn’t meant to be. Eventually, when Rachel Smith’s book “Antigua or Bust” was published, Rebecca was reminded that she wanted to row an ocean. During the dark cold winter of 2012, after years of flirting with the idea of rowing an ocean, Rebecca Berger decided it was time.
Leanne Zrum has spent her life finding ways to be close to the water – either through various sports and activities or promoting aquatic ecosystem health in her career. Growing up on Lake of the Woods in northwestern Ontario, Leanne would spend all of her summer days swimming, canoeing, and water-skiing with family and close friends. She pursued her passion for all things aquatic through her education at the University of Manitoba, graduating with a Master’s of Science in aquatic ecology, and embarked on an environmental consulting career. Leanne is an accomplished Dragon Boat paddler as well as in distance and sprint Outrigger. Leanne and Rebecca met at a local gym in 2010, and ended up competing together in Dragon Boat and Outrigger.