Today the most dangerous, intense, and harshest of all sea races, The Volvo Ocean Race, comes to an end in The Hague, Netherlands. After sailing around the globe, spending approx. 9 months at sea, today marks the last in-harbour race, although it does not change anything for the podium positions. By winning the 11th leg, Dongfeng Race Team wins the Volvo Ocean Race in a bold victory and we went hands-on with the official winner’s watch, the Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean Deep Black ‘Volvo Ocean Race’.
The very first Planet Ocean Deep Black was introduced two years ago. First as a GMT version that came in four different colour schemes (although the basis was black ceramic), and now Omega adds a 73-piece limited edition with chronograph function. To stay with the colours of the Volvo Ocean Race, Omega opted for the black/red version of the Seamaster Planet Ocean Deep Black. Tonight, one of the 73 pieces will be handed over to the skipper of the Dongfeng Race Team, when the race officially ends with the award ceremony. The other 72 pieces will be available at selected boutiques around the world, and only one will be available in The Hague, Netherlands. Luckily we had the chance to go hands-on with the winner’s watch before it’s being handed over to skipper Charles Caudrelier.
Omega is the official timekeeper of the Volvo Ocean Race, hence they are the brand to offer a watch to the skipper of the winning team. The watch itself is quite similar to the Seamaster Planet Ocean Deep Black GMT that was introduced two years, ago, however, the GMT function has been replaced by a chronograph function. The diameter of 45.5mm remains the same, and so are the screw-down crown, screw-down Helium valve, and the ceramic case and bezel. The bezel insert has been filled with red rubber, to cover the first 15 minute indices of the unidirectional bezel, and Omega’s Liquidmetal technology was applied for the rest of the diving scale.
The dial is made of brushed black ceramic and shows the Limited Edition number in the red ring around the hour counter. The red ring shows white text “Volvo Ocean Race 2017/18 – Limited Edition XX/73” and the one we had on the wrist was number zero.
Another reference to the event can be found on the caseback, where OMEGA has included the official “Volvo Ocean Race” logo. You can also see “NAIAD LOCK” engraved in the caseback and this is a system that allows Omega to close the caseback in such way that upside down logos are history.
Inside ticks Omega’s Master Chronometer calibre 9900 that has passed 8 rigorous tests, set by the Swiss Federal Institute of Metrology (METAS). With the warranty card with the watch’s unique number, the owner of the watch can even look up exactly how the watch performed during all testing stages of the Master Chronometer Test (see here for the full explanation by Omega’s Vice President of production, Andreas Hobmeier).
Congrats to all participants, and especially to the Dongfeng Race Team. What a race… I’m already looking forward to the next edition!