For several years I’ve been a member of the jury of the Watch Of The Year in Poland, organised by our friends of CH24.pl. Last week was the gala award ceremony, as per usual held in the beautiful Sobanski’s Palace in Warsaw. Last year we celebrated the many prize winner, and especially the Grönefeld brothers who won no less than two prizes! This year the Special Jury Award went to a fellow Dutchman and that’s #SpeedyTuesday founder Robert-Jan Broer.
This year was already the eight edition of the Polish Watch Of The Year, always with a transparent set of rules and an international jury. While this might not be the Grand Prix de Horlogerie de Geneva (GPHG), one should not underestimate the importance of this award, as it is certainly a good indication of the most important watches of the year. This year no less than 60 timepieces had been pre-selected, in six different categories, and over 12,000 casted their votes for the Public Prize category!
Some of the award winners receiving their prizes
During the grand evening, representatives of the winning brands received a handmade statuette: Fabien Burnier (Hermes – Classic Watch category), Nathalie Le Reun (Jaeger-LeCoultre – Sports Watch category), Marco Borraccino (Singer Reimagined – Innovation in Watchmaking category), Paula Miszczuk (Audemars Piguet – Ladies Watch category), Leszek Pilch (Longines – Watch Priced up to 10.000PLN category) and Agnieszka Ławniczak-Czajkowska (Tissot – Public Prize category). If you counted, you already saw that not every prize winner was present to collect their trophy. Greubel Forsey won the prize for Complicated Watch (they will receive the prize soon.)
Every year, the jury votes for a Special Jury Prize, for someone who has contributed greatly to the watchmaking world. Past winners include for instance Nicolas G. Hayek, MB&F, Francois-Paul Journe, Walter Lange and Jean-Claude Biver. Names that probably everyone knows. This year, after a fierce debate by the jury, the prize went to someone that is probably not as well known (however that might change due to his achievements.) The laureate is Robert-Jan Broer, founder of #SpeedyTuesday.
The #SpeedyTuesday hashtag is one of the most popular watch-related tags on Instagram. More than 77.000 pictures have been tagged #SpeedyTuesday, however, the real accomplishment was executed in collaboration with Omega. They created a special Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch to the SpeedyTuesday movement and sold it via Instagram. 2012 pieces sold-out within only 4 hours, and now these pieces are already fetching almost double the retail price. A spectacular feat and it all started one day by creating the hashtag #SpeedyTuesday. Over the five years this tag has been around, Robert-Jan wrote weekly articles (published every Tuesday of course) about special Speedmaster models, and that certainly ignited the passion for the Moonwatch with many watch lovers around the Earth.
The second ‘secret prize’ of the night was the Grand Prix for the best of the best watch presented in the past 12 months. The winner of the 2017 WOTY Grand Prix, selected from all 6 winners in all categories, is the Singer Reimagined Track 1.
The winners of the 2017 WOTY Grand Prix: Jean-Marc Wiederrecht (left) and Marco Borraccino (right) from Singer Reimagined, with Journalist Miguel Seabra (middle)
Congratulations to all the winners, and special congrats to Robert-Jan Broer for his magnificent achievement! More details over CH24.pl in their report here.