Jessica Watson's first attempt was in September 2009, when she left from Mooloolaba in Queensland in attempt to sail around the world. About 15 hours after she left, her yacht, "Ella's Pink Lady", collided with a bulk carrier near Stradbroke Island. Watson was uninjured in the incident, but her yacht was badly damaged. After the repairs to her yacht were completed, Watson sailed from Queensland's Gold Coast to Sydney and then left from Sydney on October 18, 2009 (five months after her sixteenth birthday) to sail around the world.
The distance of her voyage is about 19,000 nautical miles (35,000 kilometres) and took almost seven months to complete, as she finished her journey on May 15, 2010.