The Ocean Race, celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, has been described as one of the longest sailing sports events in the world, alongside the Olympics and America’s Cup. As its official timekeeper, Ulysse Nardin has unveiled the Ocean Diver Chronograph (Ref. 1503-170LE-2A-TOR/3A), a 100-piece limited-edition collection. The first leg of the race this year started in Alicante, Spain, in January and the final leg will end in Genova this summer. The new watch has been unveiled at Newport, Rhode Island, the US, featuring prominently on the itinerary of the sailing teams.
It all started in 1973, when the race embarked on its journey. Formerly known as the Whitbread Round the World Race and later as the Volvo Ocean Race, the Ocean Race is a sailing competition that outs crews on high seas. Ulysse Nardin, as the official timekeeper, tracks the timings of the different legs of the race, which is often described as one of the toughest events in the world. The round-the-clock race entails competing teams navigating the wildest waters. For instance, this year’s Southern Ocean leg features 12,750 nautical miles, the longest in its 50-year history, and for the first time, the teams would be passing through Cape of Good Hope, Cape Leeuwin and Cape Horn, non-stop.
Now coming back to the watch, the 44 mm black DLC titanium piece gets black, blue and white colour schemes. It sports a unidirectional bezel in Carbonium®, containing fibres from the fuselage of an aeroplane offcuts. The bezel also gets white elapsed time scale with blue markers to denote the five-minute difference between them. Incidentally, blue and white are also the official colours of the Ocean Race.
The sandblasted black dial gets three subdials. The one relaying the 30-minute elapsed times of the chronograph is at 3 o’clock, the 12-hour subdial and date aperture are at 6 o’clock and the seconds subdial is at 9 o’clock with the ‘1846’ marking that denotes the year in which the brand was founded. The colour blue can be found on the chronograph pusher at 2 o’clock, the 5-minute track on the outer periphery of the dial and the central second hand. The sword-shaped hour, minute hands and the hour markers get blue Super-LumiNova and rhodium plating. Like all other diver’s watches, this limited-edition Ocean Race diver’s watch also features a domed sapphire crystal on the dial, a screw-down crown at 3 o’clock and two chronograph pushers to start and restart the function.
Powering the new Ulysse Nardin Ocean Race Diver Chronograph is the in-house Caliber UN-150 self-winding, automatic movement with 48 hours of power reserve. This movement can be found in many of the brand’s other modern chronograph-equipped models. This movement features a balance wheel, an anchor and a hairspring, crafted from silicon for superior timekeeping and magnetic resistance. Turning the watch over showcases the black DLC sapphire caseback with ‘50’ embossed on the crystal, engraving of ‘Limited Edition’ and a stainsteel steel oscillating weight. Finishing the watch is a black rubber strap with a black ceramic element at 6 o’clock, engraved with the Ocean Race logo, and a black ceramic pin buckle. This watch comes with 300-metre water resistance and therefore, can easily handle various kinds of water sports.