Rio 2016, the XXXI Olympic Games, proved to be intensely satisfying (and dissatisfying in some ways) for America. American athletes claimed the highest number of medals – 121 — including 46 Gold, 37 Silver and 38 Bronze. Women won 27 of those 46 Golds. Some of the winners of this year’s Gold medals, were also from other countries around the world. Here we bring you a look at four winning athletes who are also watch brand ambassadors.
Michael Phelps, Omega
Revered as the most decorated Olympic athlete in history, Michael Phelps walked away from Rio 2016 with five Gold Medals and one silver. This year’s wins bring him a total of 28 Olympic medals – with 23 of them being Gold. Just 31 years old, Phelps announced his retirement at the close of his competitive swims. He is an Omega brand ambassador and wears Seamaster timepieces – naturally. Omega served again this year – for the 29th time – as the Official Timekeeper of the Olympic Games. You can read more about that here.
Usain Bolt, Hublot
After Phelps, Bolt may be the next strongest Olympic medal winner. He made history this year on the track as he became the first athlete ever to win the Gold Medal in three categories three times in a row. The Triple Triple win was in the 100M, 200M, 100x4M (with three teammates). The fastest man in the world – who turned 30 on the last day of the Olympic Games in Rio – now holds nine Olympic golds. Known as Lightning bolt, he stands in lightning formation after each win (he also says a prayer). He is a Hublot brand ambassador and has worked with the brand on the creation of several watches that bear his name. You can rad more about them and about his views on time and the Olympics in the exclusive interview here that we conducted with him right before the Games. It should be noted that in the 100x4M race, Bolt ran with Yohan Blake, who also wears a Richard Mille timepiece.
Wayde van Niekerk, Richard Mille
Although Olympic rules forbid watch brands (except Omega who is the official timekeeper) from talking about their watch brand ambassadors (for several weeks following the close of the Olympics) who are competing in the Olympic Games, we just have to figure that Wayde van Niekerk is a Richard Mille ambassador. After all, he was seen wearing a Richard Mille watch when he took the Gold and set a new world record in the men’s 400M. The South African (coached by his 74-year-old grandmother who was once a track star), ran the race in 43.03 seconds and beat Michael Johnson’s 1999 record by .15 seconds. Niekerk seemed to be wearing the bold red/orange RM27-02 Tourbillon that weighs just 4.6 grams (not even 2/10ths of an ounce) and costs close to a million dollars.
Justin Rose, Hublot
Rio 2016 marked the return of golf to the Olympic Games for the first time in more than 100 years. While some golfers bowed out of the competition in Ro this year, others made the trek and fared well. In the men’s independent golfing, Great Britain’s Justin Rose, took the Gold Medal. He is a Hublot brand ambassador and wears the Hublot Big Bang Unico in gold and black ceramic.