Need for Speed | Swiss Watch Gallery
Modern luxury
March 27, 2018

Need for Speed

IN RACING, TIME IS EVERYTHING

Watchmaking and automobile racing have always had a strong relationship. Timekeeping aside, the sport has also given way to the creation of driver’s watches in the 1960s, which enabled competitive racers to accurately monitor their lap times

Over the years, the world of motorsports has inspired watchmakers to create stunning homages to the sport itself, its personalities as well as the teams and the cars. As the 2018 motorsport racing season takes off, we look at some choice timepieces that every motorsport fan would love to have strapped on their wrist.

IN RACING, TIME IS EVERYTHING

Watchmaking and automobile racing have always had a strong relationship. Timekeeping aside, the sport has also given way to the creation of driver’s watches in the 1960s, which enabled competitive racers to accurately monitor their lap times

Over the years, the world of motorsports has inspired watchmakers to create stunning homages to the sport itself, its personalities as well as the teams and the cars. As the 2018 motorsport racing season takes off, we look at some choice timepieces that every motorsport fan would love to have strapped on their wrist.

Graham Silverstone RS Endurance 24HR

Endurance racing served as the inspiration behind the Graham Silverstone RS Endurance 24HR. To ensure it’s up to the task, Graham equipped the timepiece with a mono-pusher movement with a double chronograph function specifically for measuring 24-hour race and lap times. Designed to meet international endurance race requirements, there’s no denying the Silverstone RS Endurance 24HR is itself quite a looker. The timepiece exudes motorsport-inspired motifs such as the striped date disc – reminiscent of a race track’s red and white kerb, the seconds counter, which borrows elements of a car’s disc brake and the tyre-tread patterned rubber strap.

Blancpain

Blancpain L-Evolution Super Trofeo

When Blancpain partnered with Lamborghini for the luxury sportscar-maker’s exclusive Super Trofeo series, the Swiss watchmaker produced a limited line of timepieces as part of its L-Evolution collection. A choice piece especially for the Lamborghini fan, the Blancpain L-Evolution Super Trofeo flyback chronograph boasts a head-turning design complete with a subsidiary seconds dial shaped like the Lamborghini shield logo. Blancpain also incorporated the same materials that were used in Lamborghini cars for this limited-edition chronograph including a carbon fibre case and dial and utilised Alcantara leather – like the seats in the Lamborghini Gallardo – for its strap.

Alpina Racing Automatic

The Alpina Racing Automatic was born out of the partnership between endurance racing outfit Level 5 Motorsports and Alpina Geneve in the world renowned Le Mans 24 Hours. The watchmaker created the timepiece to honour the racing team with style. The Alpina Racing Automatic was designed with a 47m stainless steel case with black dial and 12-hour full chronograph function. Alpina also equipped the limited-edition timepiece with a transparent case back to view the automatic movement and a black leather strap with red contrasting stitching, reminiscent of handcrafted leather interiors of today’s finest sports cars.

 

Bell & Ross BR 03-94 RS17

With a resilient ceramic case and a sporty carbon-fibre dial, the BR 03-94 RS17 fits the mould of a Formula 1 timepiece perfectly. The watch complements Bell & Ross’ partnership with the Renault Racing Team with the team’s official colour prominently displayed on the Start & Stop push-button of the chronograph as well as on the hands, tachymeter scale and sub-counter rim. Powered by a BR-CAL.301 automatic movement, the BR 03-94 RS17 comes with a woven black rubber and ultra-resilient black synthetic fabric strap and is water resistant up to 100m

TAG Heuer Carrera Heuer-01 Red Bull Racing

Swiss watchmaker TAG Heuer is no stranger to the sport of Formula 1 due to its 30-year relationship with McLaren. However in 2016, the watchmaker joined Red Bull Racing and immediately made an impact with the TAG Heuer Carrera Heuer-01 Red Bull Racing Formula One Team limited edition.  The enhanced version of the brand’s steel manufacturer chronograph sports midnight blue and red accents – the team’s official colours – on the face and a Red Bull branded sapphire case back, which reveals the Heuer-01 Manufacture Chronograph. The timepiece is offered in a steel bracelet and a blue leather and black rubber strap with racing car-seat effect and a steel deployant clasp.

Tissot T-Race MotoGP

Ever since it became the official timekeeper of the MotoGP in 2001, Tissot has produced some pretty interesting timepieces inspired by the fastest race on two wheels. The T-Race MotoGP edition is often the target of many collectors owing to its stunning design inspired by the frame and parts of motorbikes. Features such as a brake-disc bezel, dashboard counters and tyre treads on the dial signify the Tissot T-Race is an altogether different breed of chronograph. Adding on the cool factor is a specially designed helmet shaped case.