The Queen of Kingfisher: The Amazing Accomplishment of Ellen MacArthur - The Solutions

February 26, 2001

All three of these questions use the formula rate × time = distance (or a variation of it). Wavre’s speed in knots would be the distance divided by the time. Therefore, it would be 430 ÷ 24, or 17.9 knots. To find how long it would have taken him to do the entire 25,000 nautical miles at 17.9 knots, this time divide the distance by the rate. It would be 25,000 ÷ 17.9, or 1396.6 hours which would be a little over 58 days! For Desjoyeaux’s rate of speed, we need to do his distance divided by time. But be careful to change his time of 93 days to 2232 hours since knots are nautical miles per hour. The equation will be 25,000 ÷ 2232, which gives an answer of 11.2 knots.

There are a few ways to tackle this problem. Again it is based on the same formula used above. Basically we need to see how long it will take to go the extra 88 nautical miles at the extra 2/3 knots. Again this is a division problem doing 88 ÷ 2/3 which gives us 132 hours.

If Ellen took 891 naps over 94 days, that is about 9.5 naps per day. If she was only asleep 5.5 hours (or 330 minutes) a day and spread that over 9.5 naps, that is about 35 minutes of sleep at a time!

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