We all know of Zenith’s high profile involvement with extreme athlete/adventurer Felix Baumgartner (which most recently culminated in this outstanding and exclusive turquoise-dialed Christophe Colomb Gravity Control timepiece), but I thought we take a moment today to look at a less high profile form of adventure that the brand has more recently become involved with, sailing. In its capacity as official timekeeper for the Spindrift racing team since 2014, it was only natural that Zenith might issue a commemorative timepiece or two.
In what I would describe as a spectacular fusion of materials, mechanics, and adventure, Zenith pays tribute to one of the great explorers of this century and a true champion of extreme challenges, Felix Baumgartner, with the this new Academy Christophe Colomb . You may recall the Baumgartner, an experienced parachutist and base jumper, and his historic jump from a stratospheric capsule in 2012. This epic and unprecedented project was known as the Red Bull Stratos Mission. Baumgartner jumped from an altitude of 128,100 feet above earth, and reached a top speed of 833.9 miles per hour (Mach 1.29!) — and he did it wearing a Zenith watch. So it is only fitting that Zenith pays tribute to this man in a an exceptional ten-piece DLC-coated platinum limited edition of the Academy Christophe Colomb model. What an incredible timepiece this is — I’ve got some great high-res close-ups and full details for y0u, below.
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This is the Zenith El Primero Chronomaster 1969 “Tribute to The Rolling Stones”, a limited edition of 250 pieces. The 12-hour chronograph register is overlaid with the famous Rolling Stones red tongue and lip design/logo.
Based on the 60mm Zenith Type 20, the Type 20 Grand Feu features intricately worked white gold bezel, lugs and crown in combination with a case sculpted out of a block of sapphire. At 60mm, this is easily the largest sapphire watch case ever made — and a first for Zenith. Oh, one more thing — the dial is made of enamel (grand feu technique). Put it all together and what do you have? One fancy looking showpiece. And that’s really what this is, which is also why only 10 pieces will be made.