At the minimum, consider owning the boat
and taking it out in some rough water
before deciding whether it really is a good idea to remove the bench. At this point, you are working with a mental picture of the change, AKA a "fantasy." That's not all that good a basis for making a decision. Reality often intrudes on our dreams.
And, if you do it, don't destroy but remove, so you can replace the bench when you find that your forestay keeps going slack when you hit a wave......