Before it became known as the “Moonwatch,” Omega’s Speedmaster chronograph was designed and engineered for auto racing. In celebration of its partnership with the Swiss sailing team Alinghi, a challenger for the 2021 America’s Cup, Omega takes the Speedy back to its race-timing roots, this time with a distinctly nautical flavor. Here is what you need to know about the Omega Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon Alinghi.
Described by Omega CEO Raynald Aeschlimann as the product of “two great Swiss brands combining their passion for innovation and sailing,” the new watch features a 44.25-mm case in black zirconium-oxide ceramic, the traditional material of the “Dark Side of the Moon” sub-family within the larger Speedmaster collection. Inside is the manual-winding Caliber 1865, based on the 1861 movement that powers the Dark Side of the Moon Apollo 8 model (reviewed in detail here) and enhanced with laser ablation on its mainplate and barrel bridges that mimics the honeycomb pattern on the carbon hull of Alinghi’s TF35 catamaran boat. Other bridges feature a laser-ablation carbon motif also inspired by the look and material of the hull. Omega says that the caliber’s lightweight, thin construction makes it ideal for sailing crews, to whom every minuscule unit of weight on board their vessels makes a difference.
The watch’s black-with-red-details aesthetic is inspired by the colors of the Alinghi logo, which have been cleverly incorporated into the case and dial details. A red varnished Alinghi logo appears on the chronograph stop-start pusher, while the traditional hand on the 6 o’clock subdial has been replaced by a sandblasted anodized disk with a trasferred Alinghi emblem (a stylized “a” formed by two churning boat waves), which rotates when the chronograph is activated. The distinctive red is also used for the central seconds hand, the 4-to-5-minute tactical time display on the 3 o’clock subdial, geared for regatta countdowns; and the word “tachymètre” on the bezel’s tachymeter scale, a hallmark of Speedmasters and a link to their motorsport-timing roots.
The Omega Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon comes on a perforated black perforated rubber strap with red lining and stitching, echoing the colorways of the dial and bezel. It is priced at $10,800.