Yes I do need to swim faster but that's not going to happen to any significant degree
Heres what I got.
So the last time we did this swim there was a team with 4-5 guys from the Australian national open water team and a German of similar caliber. The came off the beach through the heard of boats way way way ahead of everyone with a big Australian flag flying shouting "God save the Queen!" They finished in just over 3 hours.
Yes you hang near the swimmer as the boat if your navigational reference. In years past navigation is the hardest parts. It's tough swimming a 10 mile straight line. This year I have the new GPS that will show me the straight line instead of from my current position.