By adding up to 100kg (220lb) of lead to my boat – the equivalent of a pretty big passenger – I will undoubtedly be slowing down the boat. However, the effect on my daily mileages may not be as great as you’d think. These words from Phil Morrison, the boat designer:
The extra weights (50kg or 100kg) will increase the whetted area and hence the drag by 1.8% and 3.5% (we can ignore the other forms of resistance at the speed you will be moving). This amounts to 0.9% and 1.7% decrease in speed for the same power input. That equates to 0.6 mile per day for the worst case, assuming you can manage around 35 miles a day. It may be possible that the extra stability will make the boat easier to row and you’d get that back in practice, who knows?
So I think I can live with that as a percentage. My priority for the Pacific, which is not a race, is to have a good time, rather than make good time.
On the Atlantic I made life difficult for myself by being impatient to get across. In fact my original goal had not been to compete in a race at all, but simply to have a big adventure and hopefully learn a few things about life along the way – and to share that adventure and those life lessons with anybody who might be interested.
So if it takes me a few extra days, but those extra days are good days, then I don’t mind.
Remind me I said this when I’ve been eating ocean rations for 4 months!!