Independent Swiss watchmaker Horage has partnered with the US Biathlon to create a limited edition piece that honors both the 2022 Winter Team and association as a whole. The US Biathlon athletes have an incredible spirit and their resilience and determination resonated with Horage. After all, being a relatively new, small watchmaker in a crowded Swiss field comes with its share of obstacles. The 2022 team relies heavily on donors and sponsor support for training and international competitions, and 50% of revenue from the limited edition watches will go directly to the team.
Options on the watch case back include a specific athlete’s signature or the US Biathlon team on the sapphire exhibition window. If you select an athlete, they’ll receive a portion of the donation from the sale. If you select the team as a whole, the entire donation will be distributed evenly among the team. Landon Stirling, Marketing Director at Horage, has supported the US Biathlon team for many years. This started with uniforms and street wear as Director of the North American Market at Maloja Clothing, a Bavarian technical outwear and lifestyle brand. He’s since developed a personal relationship with the team and is proud to continue supporting both athletes and the association with a custom Horage timepiece.
The US Biathlon piece is based on the existing Horage Multiply Power Reserve, which gets an upgraded US Biathlon dial and case back. The stainless steel case is 41mm in diameter with a facet cut sapphire crystal featuring five anti-reflective coatings. There are polished and brushed surfaces that blend into the two-link steel bracelet with deployant clasp. Two complimentary NATO straps are also included. The crown is push/pull with a deep knurling for easy manipulation and the case back is secured with six screws. Water resistance is rated at 100 metres. The case back customization is solely up to the buyer, making this a rather exclusive offering that honors a favorite athlete or the team in general.
The white dial has a special groomed course pattern on the bottom half, reminiscent of a sunray pattern, and the US Biathlon logo is just below 12 o’clock. This is a three-hand dial with a power reserve indicator at 6 o’clock, which has been designed to resemble a rifle scope. Biel/Bienne is printed at the bottom in lieu of Swiss Made, which is engraved on the movement – it’s a Horage tradition to have a bit of fun with this as it also says Hand Made on the case back. The watch is indeed Swiss Made with an in-house automatic. The applied indices and diamond cut hands have Super-LumiNova inserts, and above each of the indices is a closed target marker. The lollipop-style seconds hand has a diamond replacing a circle. The dial is simple and clean, but with a surprising amount of US Biathlon references.
Powering the watch is Horage’s own K1 automatic, which debuted in 2015. It’s one of three calibres engineered and developed by the brand that include a flying tourbillon and micro-rotor. The K1 has 22 jewels, beats at 25,200vph (3.5Hz) with a 65-hour power reserve, and it comes with a silicon escapement. It’s adjusted to a chronometer level of accuracy at -4/+6 seconds per day. This is a modular movement, so complications such as a big date or power reserve indicator can be added or removed without altering the dimensions. It’s well finished, although light on decorations and features a tungsten rotor with a laser etched logo. As mentioned earlier, Swiss Made is engraved at the top right. Functions include central hours, minutes and seconds, and a power reserve indicator.
Pricing & Availability
The Horage US Biathlon 2022 Winter Team Limited Edition retails for USD 2,500 (inclusive of tax, duties and shipping). Preorders are open from February 3rd to February 22nd and a maximum of 100 pieces will be produced. Each watch will be made to order with the custom case backs and will ship in Summer 2022. The price is competitive for an in-house Swiss piece and a lot of the proceeds will support a great team. For more information and preorders, please visit Horage’s website.
Opening image based on a photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images