Back in 1967, Heuer became the official Time Keeper of the famous American’s Cup regatta for the first time, the year in which the US Intrepid defended the title and it was this same sailboat that served as a source of inspiration for the watchmaking brand to present its first regatta chronograph, the Heuer Skipper which today is one of the most sought after chronographs among collectors in that category.
Since then, the brand has chosen to remain outside this category by not producing new regatta chronographs, except in 2017 for the 50th anniversary of the Skipper, producing a limited edition of just 125 units in partnership with Hodinkee and today six years since then, the glorious chronograph returns to life with the introduction of the new Tag Heuer Carrera Skipper.
And before we dwell on the new Skipper “Benjamin”, let’s recall its evolution. The first Skipper with ref. 7754 was housed in a 35mm steel case displaying a dark blue dial that features a dual totalizer layout at 3-9 o’clock. The first tri-colour in green, turquoise and orange a 15-minute counter namely “the first regatta horn” and a running second in turquoise whose colour is inspired by the tone of the deck of the US Intrepid that we talked about above. We can also find a white chapter ring, applied hour markers, pencil hands and an orange chronograph centre seconds hand.
In 2017, the commemorative edition appeared, featuring a 39mm steel glassbox as a base, with a colour scheme on the dial that was very faithful to the original, translating into a blue background, a white outer ring, applied silver indexes and pencil hands, the same orange chronograph centre seconds hand but with a different layout. The same tri-colour counter now works as a 30-minute totalizer at 9 o’clock while in its original position at 3 o’clock a date window was raised.
The new Skipper, despite coming again in the 39mm glassbox, returns to its origins, returning the 15-minute tri-colour counter at 3 o’clock, restoring all its practicality, also returning to display the turquoise totalizer at 9 o’clock that now gives place to a contemporary 12-hour counter that replaces the former running seconds that is now moved to the 6 o’clock and that also allocates a date window. With the exception of the new blue chapter ring almost everything else remains on the blue dial, namely the applied hour markers that now come with an orange pip lume, pencil hands filled with Super-LumiNova that now add orange tips and that match the chronograph centre seconds hand.
On the outside, it wears a 13mm thick stainless steel case with 46mm lug-to-lug distance, domed sapphire crystal and dial, fluted crown embossed with the brand’s logo, two pump-style pushers and 100m of water resistance.
The new Skipper is powered by the in-house automatic movement Caliber TH 20-00 which operates at 28,800 Vph and offers up to 80 hours of power reserve, which can be observed through the sapphire glass of the rear case.
Finally, note that the chronograph is attached to a blue fabric strap with a push-button folding clasp and can be purchased for CHF 6,600.
The return of the Heuer Skipper is good news for all those who revere vintage chronographs that defined an era while retaining all of their original designs.
One of the things that we like most about the Skipper is that, unlike many other regatta chronographs that appear on the market from time to time, the Skipper continues to be among the rest in presenting an absolutely discreet but at the same time distinctive layout, which allows the use in diverse environments and not just as a sports watch, and so this is perhaps the only chronograph I would like to own from TAG Heuer at moment.
The other good news is that the new Skipper is here to stay as it joins the regular collection of TAG Heuer whose price represents only a premium of CHF 300 compared to other Carreras Glassbox which for today seems a bargain.
Read more here.
Brand: TAG Heuer
Model: Carrera Skipper
Case Material: Stainless steel
Case Dimensions: 39 mm Diameter, 13 mm thickness, 46 mm lug-to-lug
Crystal: Sapphire Glass
Case Back: Sapphire Glass
Water Resistance: 100 Meters
Strap: Blue fabric strap with a push-bottom folding clasp
Calibre: TH 20-00
Functions: Hours, minutes, small seconds, date, chronograph
Frequency: 28,800 Vph
Power Reserve: 80 Hours
Price: € 6,850
Limited Edition: No