I'll sail every chance I get, but when the passage is dead to windward, endless tacking would have cost me my companion, a price
I wouldn't even consider.
By motorsailing, we made better speed, had better stability, and put less stress on the engine
and rig. There were occasions when the wind
was light and we took full advantage by purely motoring, as Bruce says, "hell for leather." For example, I finished the Mona Passage in the early morning hours and pulled into Boqueron, Peurto Rico with nearly flat seas and 5 knots of wind
. The engine was parked at 2500 rpm
and I was happy to be making good progress at over six knots. While I certainly prefer to sail, the practical nature of getting my house, companion, and new-to-me boat
to windward won over the need to sail.
In a cat, one with little mini-keels, how much leeway do you make and what kind of angles can you sail? The reason I ask is that I had lots of friends with them (Lagoons, Mantas, etc.) and don't know any of them that tacked and sailed to windward. We left an offshore
reef in Honduras
with a set of cats all pulling to windward. My shoal draft Island Packet
was out-pointing all of them and with better speed, and I consider that the IP had unimpressive windward performance.