Esquire Malaysia Watch Guide - - Spe­cial Fea­tures -

the race­track and one of the most rep­utable watch­mak­ers spe­cial­is­ing in sports watches.

THE CHAL­LENGE Zase. This new watch would not to be worn by a driver, but in­stead by the crew in the pits as they mon­i­tor the race. The watch­mak­ers at Aude­mars Piguet took on this chal­lenge, but they needed to start from scratch be­cause it had never been done in me­chan­i­cal watches.

Five years later, Aude­mars Piguet pre­sented the com­pleted Royal Oak Con­cept Lap­ti­mer Michael Schu­macher. The watch­mak­ers man­aged to meet the chal­lenge with a chrono­graph that can record sev­eral lap times with­out it be­ing an over-com­pli­cated read on the dial. The watch has a chrono­graph func­tion that drives two cen­tral chrono-hands con­trolled in­de­pen­dently by three push­ers, which work like all con­ven­tional chrono­graphs.

THE FUNC­TIONS

The first pusher lo­cated at two o’clock is to start and stop the record­ing. The se­cond pusher lo­cated at four o’clock is to re­set the chrono­graph. It is the third pusher that makes this chrono­graph a world’s first and it sits at nine o’clock. The third pusher can si­mul­ta­ne­ously stop ei­ther one of the two hands while re­set­ting the oth­ers back to zero and restart­ing the tim­ing for the se­cond round af­ter the tim­ing of the most

THE BODY A spe­cial move­ment de­serves a unique hous­ing to pro­vide the best pro­tec­tion. Aude­mars Piguet’s team de­vel­oped a strong and com­plex case. The bezel, the case band and the case back are made of ti­ta­nium, the push­ers of ce­ramic and pink gold, and the rest of forged car­bon. In com­bi­na­tion, they re­sult in an ex­tremely strong yet light time­piece, which is def­i­nitely an added bonus for a sports watch.

The open­work dial has black­ened skele­ton bridges and ex­posed nat­u­ral move­ment com­po­nents. The cen­tral hour and minute hands are in white gold with lu­mi­nes­cent coat­ing and the cen­tral chrono se­cond hands are black­ened with lu­mi­nes­cent tips. The con­tin­u­ous se­cond counter is at three o’clock with lu­mi­nes­cent mark­ings and a white gold hand.

BIRTH­MARKS There are fur­ther mark­ings hon­our­ing Michael Schu­macher who is now con­va­lesc­ing af­ter his near-fa­tal ski­ing ac­ci­dent. Seven stars on the case band mark his seven F1 World Cham­pi­onship ti­tles, the “MS” mono­gram ap­pears on the lap­ti­mer pusher and this spe­cial com­mem­o­ra­tive watch is only avail­able in 221 pieces, ref­er­enc­ing the num­ber of For­mula One races he won.

With all the tech­ni­cal in­no­va­tions and the de­tails that went into cre­at­ing this mas­ter­piece, it is a wor­thy trib­ute to a leg­end, and one that show­cases the tech­ni­cal and watch­mak­ing ex­per­tise of Aude­mars Piguet. This is a sin­gu­lar and im­por­tant time­piece, the ul­ti­mate prize that you can ever have the plea­sure of own­ing in your life­time.

Top: Michael Schu­micher.

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