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All that lies above and beyond RM 67-02, as Richard Mille takes a Quan­tum Leap with its brand part­ner, the high jumper Mu­taz Essa Barshim

Indonesia Tatler - - | Life -

Arch­ing his back high over the bar at 2.36 me­tres be­fore land­ing grace­fully to a thun­der­ous ap­plause, in­clud­ing a mes­merised Richard Mille in the crowd, Mu­taz Essa Barshim then bagged a sil­ver medal at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. Fly­ing to such heights with fi­nesse and skill was noth­ing new for Mu­taz who holds the na­tional and Asian record with a best mark of 2.43 me­tres. Thus, RM 67-02, a Richard Mille watch as prime, pre­cise, el­e­gant, and light as Mu­taz him­self, was born.

How did you start out as an ath­lete? Why did you choose the high jump in­stead of other ath­letic sports? Mu­taz Essa Barshim: My fa­ther was an ath­lete too, but he was a mid- and longdis­tance walker be­fore turn­ing to coach­ing. He loves ath­let­ics so much that he would take me to watch prac­tices at the sta­dium and has al­ways sup­ported me even though I was al­ways the worst un­til the age of 15 or 16. But I loved it so much that I kept on go­ing. Ba­si­cally, I was hav­ing fun as a child dur­ing my first years of train­ing be­cause I would spend less time at school or study­ing—be­sides, run­ning and walk­ing are too tir­ing com­pared with the high jump where you get to do back­flips or trampoline just like in a park dur­ing play­time.

Now that you’ve re­cov­ered from your pre­vi­ous in­jury, how are you pre­par­ing your­self men­tally and phys­i­cally for 2019 IAAF World Cham­pi­onship in Doha and the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo? MEB: You need to make sure you’re strong enough phys­i­cally to com­pete while also be­ing ready to take on the pressure men­tally. My coach, my agent, and I have dis­cus­sions about com­pe­ti­tions to join and to not join, es­pe­cially lead­ing up to the Olympics. It’s not wise to travel too far out and too of­ten be­fore­hand— I’ve learned that I don’t deal well with jet­lag and pre­fer to ar­rive around a month be­fore a com­pe­ti­tion to let my body ad­just. Please share with us about the mak­ing of the RM 67-02 and the mo­ment when you first tried it on. What did you feel then? MEB: I went to the work­shop a few times where Richard Mille’s watch­mak­ers ex­plained to me how it all works, and I even got to try my hand at as­sem­bling the parts— hope­fully I can visit the fac­tory in the fu­ture. All in all, it took around a year to cre­ate the RM 67-02, and I felt so happy when it was fin­ished, just 10 days be­fore the 2017 IAAF World Cham­pi­onship in Lon­don.

Richard had told me that it would be very light on my wrist, so I was look­ing for­ward to try­ing it out—and that mo­ment of the cham­pi­onship was just un­for­get­table. My friends were there, Richard was there, and I got this cool watch in the colours of Qatar’s flag, and the na­tional an­them was play­ing. Af­ter­wards, we cel­e­brated my win with din­ner with the Richard Mille team and we talked so much about watches.

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