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What the Sea Teaches Us: The Crew of the Morning Light

Author captures the journey of the ‘Morning Light’ crew

Every ocean racer knows the thrill of the chase, of taking on the big seas.

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“What the Sea Teaches Us: The Crew of the Morning Light” ($24.95, Disney Editions, 2008) by Jeff Kurtti and with a foreword by Roy E. Disney, is a hardcover companion to “Morning Light,” the documentary Disney produced last fall on young sailors racing in the Transpacific Yacht Race.

The book chronicles the recruitment and training of 15 sailors, all around 21 years old, sailing from Los Angeles to Hawaii. None of the sailors were actors and there was no script for the film.

The book goes beyond an account of the competition and delves into the individuals on the Transpac 52 Morning Light, how they came to be there and how the experience shaped their lives. The oversized design allows proper presentation for the lavish full-color and black-and-white photos accompanying the text.

Kurtti, a Seattle native, is author of 20 books, and has been a consultant in the entertainment industry since 1995.

Disney was born in Los Angeles in 1930 and first took up sailing in 1956, raising his four children on and off the water. He raced to Hawaii in the Transpacific Yacht Race in 1975 on his Sparkman & Stephens yawl, Shamrock. He set new elapsed-time records in the Transpacific Yacht Race in 1977 and 1999, and has been a member of the Transpac board of directors since 1996. For information, visit

This article originally appeared in the March 2009 issue.