- The prestigious Swiss watchmaker OMEGA is proudly backing the Kiwi crew’s campaign to win the 35th America’s Cup.
OMEGA’s partnership with Emirates Team New Zealand began in 1995 alongside the legendary round-the-world skipper and America’s Cup legend Sir Peter Blake. Since then, OMEGA’s support has only grown stronger. This year in Bermuda, the brand will once again serve the Kiwi crew as their sponsor and Official Timekeeper.
Raynald Aeschlimann, the President and CEO of OMEGA, is particularly enthusiastic about the team’s chances this year and says, “There is much to admire about Emirates Team New Zealand and their qualities reflect many of OMEGA’s own. Firstly, there is a commitment to precision and a determination to push boundaries. They have a wonderful history; and of course, the craftsmanship of their boats is the ultimate example of beauty and design. To see OMEGA’s name across their sails is a great source of pride for our brand.”
As part of its support for the New Zealand team, OMEGA has unveiled two new timepieces.
The first watch available to own is the very model that will be worn on board by the crew as they carve through the waters of the Great Sound. The Speedmaster X-33 Regatta ETNZ Limited Edition is both analogue and digital and includes an ingenious Regatta function to keep track of the critical five-minute countdown to the start of the race. A series of alarms, each with their own recognisable ringing sequence, gives the crew audible cues so they can concentrate fully on preparation. Once the race begins, the X-33 can then be used to measure progress.
Cased in brushed grade 2 titanium, it has a black dial with blue rings and white transferred markings, as well as cut outs for digital readings. The bezel ring is a ceramic/titanium mix and features stars at the 15, 30, 45 and 60 second positions, which together reference the Southern Cross on the New Zealand flag. Analogue time is displayed by a skeletonised black-and-white hour hand, a red minute hand and a black-and-white seconds hand. Digital readings use liquid crystal displays (LCD) with grey segments on a black background.
The caseback is a double back system to ensure the best sound transmission of the alarm functions. The outer back is fixed with 8 screws and stamped with an Emirates Team New Zealand logo in the centre, engraved with “CHALLENGER FOR THE 35TH AMERICA’S CUP”, “X-33 REGATTA”, as well as the watch’s limited edition number. The watch is presented on a black coated nylon fabric strap with blue rubber lining and blue stitching; fastened with a polished-brushed titanium buckle. It is powered by a quartz multifunctional chronograph movement: OMEGA calibre 5620 – and limited to 2,017 pieces.
The second watch, the Seamaster Planet Ocean ETNZ “Deep Black” Master Chronometer, has been made with supporters in mind and embraces the blue and red of the New Zealand flag.
Cased in black ceramic, it features a ceramic bezel with an OMEGA Liquid-Metal® diving scale that highlights the pre-race 15 minute countdown; in blue and red rubber (the colours of the New Zealand flag) for the first 10 minutes, and START in LiquidMetal® for the final 5. The dot at 12 o’clock is filled with Super-Luminova and emits a green glow. The vertically-brushed black ceramic dial sports 18K white gold indexes and a GMT ring with day/night display.
An Emirates Team New Zealand logo in red dominates the reverse side, which is ringed with the words CHALLENGER 35TH AMERICA’S CUP. Completing the watch’s race-ready look is a black structured strap with black and blue rubber lining and red stitching; and new brushed black ceramic buckle. ETNZ “Deep Black” is powered by the OMEGA Master Chronometer Calibre 8906.
In their quest to win the “Auld Mug”, the crew of Emirates Team New Zealand will be giving it their all on Bermuda’s Great Sound. OMEGA and the crew’s many dedicated supporters will be hoping that the Kiwis can lift the trophy once again.