This upcoming weekend (May 7-8) in New York signifies something incredible: America’s Cup racing returns to the city for the first time since 1920 in the form of the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series races. With it, three top watch brands — Bremont, Ulysse Nardin and Omega – get involved in a big way, each hoping their team sails to the win.
Even more exciting is the fact that this year witnesses some of the most superb sailing thanks to the fact that the five challengers, plus the Defender — Oracle Team USA – race in AC45F catamarans, whose high-tech hydrofoils can sail right out of the water and fly across it.
With the title sponsor of the events being the famed Louis Vuitton, the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series races – taking place in the Hudson River – will steal your breath away. Witnessing these high-speed racing vehicles is thrilling –as top sailors from around the globe vie for points that count toward the finale competition – that will be the 35th America’s Cup in 2017. America’s Cup racing has come a long way in the almost 100 years since the glorious sport took place in Gotham’s offshores.
For the 35th America’s Cup, British watch brand Bremont is the Official Timekeeper, and is also the top sponsor of the Defender of the America’s Cup, Oracle Team USA, led by Jimmy Spithill. In fact, it was in June of 2015 that Bremont announced its appointment at the Official Timing Partner to the 35th America’s Cup and to the defending champion. At that time, the brand unveiled the first watches in honor of the America’s Cup.
Now, Bremont releases a new collection of Regatta Chronographs. The Regatta AC (America’s Cup) and Regatta OTUSA (Oracle Team USA) watches stress the importance of the countdown function in racing. During the last minutes before the race begins, the vessels make their final maneuvers to get into proper starting position. The Regatta watches, with a newly designed Regatta caliber, incorporates a five-minute regatta countdown function and a 12-hour chronograph function with center seconds. The automatic movement of the custom Bremont caliber is equipped with 25 jewels, an Anachron balance spring, Nivaflex 1 main spring and offers 42 hours of power reserve. It is also water resistant to 100 meters and holds COSC chronometer certification.
In addition the Defender, Oracle Team USA, which is vying to keep its championship role in the Louis Vuitton America’s cup World Series events, five other challenger teams are competing in hopes of bringing the Cup back to their respective home Yacht Clubs.
Artemis Racing of Sweden is one of them, and is sponsored by Ulysse Nardin, among others. In fact, last fall when the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup Racing series was held in Bermuda, we had the chance to join the brand and Artemis Racing out on the crystal clear waters of the island. That event culminated in a great win for Artemis Racing Team and Ulysse Nardin, Official Partner of the team.
As Official Partner of Artemis Racing, Ulysse Nardin also underscores its role with a designated Marine Diver Artemis Racing nautical watch. Like the brand’s famed Marine Diver watches, the 44mm timepiece features a unidirectional bezel and is water resistant to 300 meters. It also offers small seconds, date window, power reserve indicator and an anti-reflective sapphire crystal – all powered by the automatic UN-26 movement. It is crafted in stunning blue and yellow Artemis Team colors for the rubber strap and dial, and the engraved caseback features the team logo, boat and “Challenger 35th America’s Cup” verbiage. Just 250 pieces will be made.
Omega is also involved in the America’s Cup, as a sponsor of Emirates Team New Zealand, led by Peter Burling, the youngest member of the fleet. In honor of that relationship, Omega unveils the Seamaster Diver 300M ETNZ.
Like its name indicates, the Omega Seamaster Diver 300M ETNZ is water resistant to 300 meters. It has a black ceramic unidirectional rotating bezel with a polished diving scale with indications made in relief using laser ablation. A dot at the top of the bezel is coated with white Super-LumiNova and emits a green light for easy location of 12 o’clock in the dark. The watch indicates the five-minute countdown to the races.
The 4mm case is crafted of sandblasted grade 5 titanium and the dial has applied indexes coated with white Super-LumiNova that emit a blue light. The chronograph features a small seconds sub-dial at 9 o’clock, a 12-hour recorder at 6 o’clock and a 30-minute recorder at 3 o’clock which
Other Challenger teams involved in the race are Land Rover BAR, led by Olympic winner Ben Ainslie, Softbank Team Japan, and Groupama Team France.
This New York race is the second of what promises to be a challenging 2016 calendar year. The first races were held in Muscat, Oman, and the ensuing races after New York are slated to take place in Chicago in June, Portsmouth, UK, in July, and two others yet to be finalized. The final America’s Cup races will take place in May/June 2017 in Bermuda.
America’s Cup racing – held in New York from 1870 through 1920 – has deep-seated roots in the City that Never Sleeps. Beginning in 1930, the competition was moved to Newport, RI, until l983 when the United States lost the Cup – ending the longest winning streak in the sport. Still, New Yorkers have long memories and this weekend promises to be an exciting one of grand racing and fine timing.
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