DAYTONA BEACH AND THE BEGINNINGS OF RACING WATCHES
It is 1963
One year after the first endurance race, in 1963, Rolex launched its Cosmograph Daytona. The famous race track of Daytona Beach in Florida served as the namesake. Rolex developed here a chronograph specifically for racers and racing. Therefore, the Daytona has an extra large and easy to read tachymeter scale on the bezel to this day. The coveted sports chronograph is available in stainless steel, stainless steel & yellow gold (bicolor), rose , yellow and white gold and platinum.
3 TOP FACTS DAYTONA
1. Why does the Daytona carry the suffix Cosmograph?
Rolex Daytona models have carried the "Cosmograph" label since 1963 - this is the brand-typical designation for chronographs from the house of Rolex. Rolex has previously used the term "Cosmograph" on a watch with a moon phase display, but this can no longer be found in the current collection.
II. Why Rolex & Daytona
A pragmatic decision: Race organizers at Daytona International Speedway were looking for a timekeeper for lap times. In 1962, Rolex became the official partner here. In the course of this partnership, a Rolex chronograph officially appeared for the first time in 1963 under the name Rolex Daytona with the reference 6239. Winners of the Daytona Beach race are likely to this day to bring home a coveted Daytona in addition to the victory trophy.
III. Daytona & Paul Newman
Every watch enthusiast has heard of it. The Paul Newman Daytona. In the broadest sense, this is a Rolex Cosmograph with an "exotic dial" - specifically, the dial and totalizers are each a different color. The actor and racing driver always had such a stainless steel model on his wrist and probably shaped the history and success like no other (although he has never been a brand ambassador for Rolex). On the right, a yellow gold model from the current collection with a black dial and champagne-colored totalizers.
But let's start from the beginning: "DRIVE CAREFULLY ME" This statement was to be a love token, talisman and reminder at the same time for the great Paul Newmann when his wife Joanne Woodward gave him the Daytona 6239 in 1972 and had "Drive Carefully Me" engraved on the back.
Rolex Cosmograph Daytona 116508 in 18 Karat Gelbgold mit exotischem Zifferblatt
According to tradition, there are several versions of how this is supposed to have happened... During a visit, Newman asked his son-in-law-to-be what time it was, to which Cox replied that he did not own a watch. Saying, "Here, then take this," Newman gave the watch to James Cox. Another version is said to be that Cox was repairing the tree house on the family estate in Connecticut and received the watch as a gift from Newman.
The fact is that the watch, which cost around $1,000 in the 1970s, achieved a result of about $17.7 million in 2017 (photo right) at an auction held by the Philipps auction house.
Rolex Daytona 6239 , versteigert für 17,7 Mio. USD Copyright: Philipps
You rush to appointments, work and the days often have too few hours. Your motivation is to create something great and end up with the freedom to choose the environment of your choice. The freedom to express yourself. The freedom to make it exactly the way you want it. The freedom to drive towards the sun. Without compromise. Whether it's a brand new supercar or a scratchy classic car, it's all about you and what you want. Your personality - your car, your watch on your wrist - your time!
LE MANS - Steve McQueen & TAG Heuer
A racy connection
Let's jump right in. In the 1960s and '70s, daredevil and playboy Steve McQueen rose to movie stardom through films like "The Magnificent Seven" and landed the legendary lead role of "Michael Delaney" in the racing classic "Le Mans," which was released in 1971 (with moderate success at the time) and dealt with the 24-hour Le Mans race. McQueen - himself a great watch fan and enthusiastic about his Rolex Submariner diver's watch (Ref. 5512) - has the Heuer Monaco with the reference 1133B with characteristic blue matte dial on his arm during the filming - so this is the watch that Steve McQueen actually also wore in the film.
(Tag) Heuer was already very actively involved in racing as a timekeeper and invested very large sums even back then. Today, Tag Heuer is active, among other things, as a sponsor in Formula 1 for the Red Bull Racing Team and pays tribute to his love of racing, in addition to the Tag Heuer Monaco, especially through the model series "Formula 1" and "Carrera". In 2019, the 24-hour race was remade with the film "Le Mans 66 - against all odds" starring Christian Bale - an absolute recommendation for racing fans. Sidefact: Steve McQueen gives his Heuer 1133B engraved "TO HAIG LE MANS 1970" to chief mechanic Haig Alltounian (also McQueen's personal mechanic) on the last day of filming. The watch was auctioned at the end of 2020 for 2.2 million USD.
CHOPARD & MILLE MIGLIA
The great Enzo Ferrari called it "The most beautiful race in the world" - the Mille Miglia, four days it goes south to Rome, from there through Tuscany back to the north of Italy. This is not just about speed and the sheer will to win, but about feeling, emotion, technology and a love of the extraordinary. Therefore, the connection between car and watch is the logical consequence. Thus, Chopard accompanies the "modern" Mille Miglia as official timekeeper and partner, and for many years now has issued a new special model each time to mark this tradition-steeped race. Sidefact: Chopard owner Karl - Friedrich Scheufele has been taking part in the race himself since 1989, alternating with his wife or Belgian racing legend Jacky Ickx during the Mille Miglia.
Since 2004, the Swiss watch manufacturer Frederique Constant has been active worldwide as a sponsor for vintage car rallies and has since assumed the role of official timekeeper. In addition, Frederique Constant annually launches the limited edition "Vintage Rally" wristwatch, demonstrating the manufacturer's passion for racing - especially for the automobiles of the British car brand Austin Healey. Each of the new watch models pays homage to their classic 1960s design. Sidefact: In the summer of 2019, HORANDO was able to attend a Healey meeting at the Unesco World Heritage Site in Bamberg as a representative of the manufacturer Frederique Constant, present the limited Frederique Constant Healey collection, admire many great Austin Healey classic cars and hear fascinating stories from the owners and drivers.