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Friday
May202011

Hard times

WORDS SIMON DE BURTON / PHOTOGRAPHY TIF HUNTER

When adventure calls, these watches – inspired by aviation, motor racing, extreme sports – have the strength of character to cope

Clockwise from top left: Bremont Mustang P-51, Breitling for Bentley Ice Speed Record, Oris Carlos Costa Cenote Series, Hamilton Khaki Pioneer Automatic, Linde Werdelin SpidoSpeed. tifhunter.comBremont Mustang P-51

Following the success of its 2008 EP120 chronograph, which included parts saved during the restoration of a Spitfire fighter, aviation watch specialist Bremont has introduced a new limited edition that incorporates metal from the fuselage of a 1944 Mustang P-51 warbird. The dial is based on the Mustang’s cockpit instruments and a sapphire crystal case back reveals a propellor-shaped winding rotor bearing the plane’s nickname - ‘Fragile but Agile’. Just 251 examples will be made. £7,450; bremont.com

Breitling for Bentley Ice Speed Record

Back in February, four times world rally champion Juha Kankkunen drove a Bentley Continental Supersports to a record-breaking 205.48 mph – on ice! The four-wheel-drive, six-litre car was running on biofuel and conventional, studless snow tyres for the attempt, which took place in sudden blizzards, powerful crosswinds and -30°F temperatures. To mark the achievement, Bentley’s watchmaking partner Breitling offers this Ice Speed Record chronograph with a white dial and white rubber strap. £5,440; breitling.com

Oris Carlos Costa Cenote Series

In 2010, Venezuelan freediver Carlos Costa set a new Guinness World Record by completing a 150m underwater swim through the Mexican Dos Ojos sea cave network (or cenote) armed with just a torch and a monofin. In recognition of the feat, Oris has created the rugged Carlos Coste Cenote Series, which features a high-visibility minute-counter and a scratchproof ceramic bezel. Each titanium chronograph is supplied with both a bracelet and a rubber strap together with a certificate verifying it is from a limited edition of 2,000. £2,650; oris.ch  

Hamilton Khaki Pioneer Automatic

Hollywood action hero Harrison Ford originally teamed up with watch brand Hamilton back in 2008 to produce a line of watches for an organisation called Team Earth that ‘catalyses personal and collective action for the planet via the connective power of the web’. The third and latest watch that Ford and Hamilton have collaborated on is the Team Earth Khaki Pioneer chronograph, proceeds from sales of which will go to the charity. £1,320; hamiltonwatch.com 

Linde Werdelin SpidoSpeed

The ‘USP’ of adventure watch brand Linde Werdelin centres around the fact that each model in the all-mechanical range is built to accept a clip-on electronic computer, called an ‘Instrument’, designed either for skiing (‘The Rock’) or SCUBA diving (‘The Reef’). Until now, Linde Werdelin has generally made time-only watches, but at the Baselworld show in March it unveiled this chronograph with a lightweight, skeletonised case and design cues taken from the motor racing world – notably sub-dials that look like brake discs and a winding rotor that resembles part of an alloy wheel. €11,760; lindewerdelin.com