1967: the Skipper is born

Episode 3 July 13, 2023 00:05:53
1967: the Skipper is born
A Matter of Time
1967: the Skipper is born

Jul 13 2023 | 00:05:53


Hosted By

TAG Heuer

Show Notes

Season 2: TAG Heuer and the ocean |

This time, we travel back to The America’s Cup in 1967. It was the year the racing yacht Intrepid stormed to victory. To commemorate Emil Mosbacher’s triumph, Heuer produced the iconic Reference 7754, or the Heuer Skipper. A timepiece that forever sealed TAG Heuer’s relationship with the ocean and sailing.


Image: Heuer Skipper, Reference 7754


Show notes:

0:40 The 1967 America’s Cup 

2:20 Heuer Reference 7754, or the Heuer Skipper

4:16 The legacy of the Skipper  

4:45 The evolution of the Skipper  

Discover our latest model of the TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Skipper on tagheuer.com.

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Episode Transcript

Speaker 1 00:00:03 Welcome to a Matter of Time, a podcast by Tag Hoya. I'm your host, Nicholas Bebe, heritage director at Tag Hoya, and a lifelong enthusiast for fine Swiss watchmaking. In this season, we're discussing this incredible connection between our great Maison and the ocean. In episode one, we covered the so lunar, the first watch ever created with a tide indicator. In episode two, we discussed the combination of this new complication with the chronograph, and today we're gonna discuss this incredible moment in history where Hoya became indelibly connected to the ocean and racing. Let's wind the clocks back to 1967. We're at Newport, Rhode Island in September. Speaker 1 00:00:46 We can see the great boats navigating off the coast, taking part in the America's Cup as the defender for the United States. We have the Intrepid, and as the challenger from Australia, we have Dame Patie. At the helm of the Intrepid is the legendary bus moss backer. He'd already won the America's Cup for his nation in 1962 at the helm of the Weatherly and Time Magazine had regarded him as one of the greatest helmsmen ever. Buss was also closely connected to the world of sports in many other ways, notably for Hoya as a director of Abercrombie and Fitch. So it's unsurprising that as the crew of the Intrepid are navigating their way to victory in the 67 America's Cup, they're using timing equipment provided by Abercrombie and Fitch. Wearing the Hoya name on his V, most notably is a countdown timer on their wrist that bears a number of different names. On there is, of course, Hoya, as well as Aquastar, the name Regatta, and for these very special watches. Also the name Intrepid Aquastar was a well-known watch brand at the time and had a specialty for producing these RGA countdown timers. Hoya, knowing that they needed to provide these wrist watches to the crew, had specifically gone to this other manufacturer during a time when the industry was much more hospitable and friendly to simply purchase the watches and stamped the name on the dam. Alongside that, there were stop watches and other paraphernalia that were all utilized in the support of the victory. Speaker 1 00:02:18 Having successfully defended the title for the United States, Hoya was keen to celebrate this victory. So the following year, in 1967, a very short run of extremely unusual watches were produced to commemorate this victory. The reference 77 54 in many ways looks exactly the same as the Carreras of the period with two registers with reference number 77 53. The most notable difference is the Dow color. It's this incredible deep vivid blue with this Soleil finish. Behind that gives this incredible animation and iridescence. When it catches the light Speaker 1 00:02:56 On the sub dances, we see a number of different colors. The key one that stands out is this beautiful teal. Now it's extremely unusual color during the period. Of course, today we see it in many fashionable environments, but the reason the watch utilized this particular shade was because it mirrored the color of the deck of the intrepid. Why would you paint the deck of a boat in this amazing teal color? Well, it comes off the back of a study that was completed by the Massachusetts's Institute of Technology to investigate the least reflective colors, and it was discovered that this particular tone reduced the amount of distracting reflection of light and was not only used on the deck of the intrepid, but also when you look at period sports cars from Maserati, they also use this extremely unusual shade. Speaker 1 00:03:43 We also have another orange and another shade of blue, and these are standard ocean regatta colors, but it's really this deep blue that covers the vast majority of the dial and this extremely distinctive teal that stand out. The minute recorder was reduced from 30 minutes from the Carrera down to 15. As this is the standard increment for the start of a regatta and that e every five minutes, there is a clear segmentation that should align with the blast of the horn that counts down to the beginning of the race. The watch is absolutely beautiful. It's a piece that I really love myself, and of course today it's extremely coveted among the core collector base of not only vintage Hoya, but also those with a passion for sailing. Whilst this very first reference would live a very short life and a very limited production run, maybe only a few hundred pieces, which of course today the survival rate is even lower due to the fact that most of them were used around the water, the name would continue on to a number of ottavia pieces, including those with a compressor case, the reference 7 7 64. Speaker 1 00:04:50 That would simplify the DW design using black as the base. Then the subdial at three o'clock to record, the minutes would be oversized. Again, cut down to 15 minutes. With the clear segmentation, it would then continue into the 1970s being used in the C shape case or T'S reference 15 C four, and a number of manual case examples. But it's this legendary skipper name, born with the reference seventy seven fifty four that would install this indelible connection between our brand and sailing. In 2017, the original skipper would provide the inspiration for a limited edition of 125 watches that we produced in partnership with Hoki, and today are among the most collectible and valuable contemporary limited edition tag ho pieces. I do hope you've enjoyed today's episode of a matter of time. Please don't forget to give us a review and leave your comments wherever you get your podcast. We always love to read them. Thank you, and I'm looking forward to welcoming you next time.

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