Whisky low, battens broken, autopilot misbehaving

Sir Robin Knox Johnston is suffering from broken battens, a temperamental autopilot and a rapidly diminishing supply of whisky. Although he has two books of poetry which may lift his spirits in a metaphysical sense, the practicalities are pressing him to consider another pit stop which would incur yet another 48 hour penalty in Cape Town.

“The decision which will come sooner rather than later is whether to
divert for new battens and to have these electronics fixed, or press
on knowing the mainsail may become unusable and I might lose the auto
pilots. Well, that’s a worst case scenario. The diversion would
probably cost 6 days in addition in sailing time, so the total loss
would be as much as 8 days, and that is 8 days onto my elapsed time
which really says that the Velux5oceans is no longer a serious
competition for me. It has to be more effective to press on for
Fremantle. Even if I lose the mainsail I can still sail and don’t see
how I’d lose 8 days because of that in a 20 day passage. The auto
pilot is more worrying, but if it works it works. Too soon to decide
but don’t want to divert unless it’s absolutely necessary.”

“There is another factor to be taken into consideration which may be
decisive. There is not the whisky aboard I thought there was. I
thought I had 8 bottles, but, having finished 2 1/2 I find only one
unopened one left. There has been a very careful search made I can
assure you. One bottle, plus a bit, to get me all the way to
Australia, is nothing like enough, and the deficiency could damage my
health. I’d like to know where the other 4 bottles have gone to
anyway. I wonder whether an air drop or rendezvous with a ship could
not be arranged. As my brother Michael said, whisky is not necessary
it’s essential! I am sure the Race Committee could understand that a
re-supply brings no competitive advantage!”