F.P. Journe Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante

The F.P. Journe Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante is a recent addition to the brand’s lineSport collection. This new timepiece evinces a contemporary aesthetic whilst being imbued with the finest, traditional craftsmanship.

This detailed review of the F.P. Journe Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante includes live images, specification and pricing.

F.P. Journe Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante - split-seconds chronograph with monopusher and large-date display

18-carat red gold model

F.P. Journe is an exemplar of haute-horlogerie. The company’s products are distilled to a pure conclusion, free of impurities. There are no concessions to expedience, everything is the refined product of patient endeavour. Indeed, I cannot overstate the excellence of the products crafted by this esteemed maison.

Since its inception in 1999, F.P. Journe has produced high-end watches that have exhibited a classical appearance. Often precious metals have been used for cases and several models have been equipped with a large date display. However, in June 2011, the Swiss watch company released its inaugural lineSport model, the Centigraphe Sport. This timepiece, housed in an aluminium case, embraced modernity with its sporty appearance. By default, the appeal of F.P. Journe’s watches increased, enticing a larger audience to consider the brand’s prestigious timepieces.

In 2012, another model was added to the lineSport collection, the Octa Sport. Subsequently, both the Centigraphe Sport and the Octa Sport were offered with titanium cases. Recently, F.P. Journe unveiled a further addition to its lineSport family, the Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante.

F.P. Journe Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante - split-seconds chronograph with monopusher and large-date display

Titanium model

The dial

The F.P. Journe Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante is offered in three case options: platinum, 18-carat red gold and titanium. Each case option is optimally paired with a specific dial colour and complemented with harmonious details. While all three variants are beautiful, I am especially drawn to the platinum version.

F.P. Journe Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante - split-seconds chronograph with monopusher and large-date display

The platinum model features a silver guilloché dial, delivered in a vivid ‘blue-mauve’ shade. The hue of the dial is particularly striking and co-exists wonderfully with the platinum case material. The hour track is adorned with ‘rhodied gold appliqué numerals’. The numerals feature serifs, aiding interpretation.

F.P. Journe Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante - split-seconds chronograph with monopusher and large-date display

A minute track encircles the dial surface and features a combination of Arabic numerals, long lines and short strokes. Each short stroke denotes of a second, consistent with the frequency of the movement (3Hz).

Sinuous hands, upholding the maison’s design language, express the hours and minutes. They assume a deferential role when viewed against the chronograph and split-second hands which both feature open-worked circular counterweights.

Two snailed registers occupy the central area of the dial, overlapping the hour track and supplanting hour markers at 3 and 9 o’clock. The two registers are joined with a grey plinth retained with four gleaming screws. This stylish design element can be found on F.P. Journe’s more traditional offerings. Each register is framed with a chemin de fer, augmenting readability.

Consistent with many F.P. Journe watches, the dial is endowed with a large date display. The date window measures 5.20mm x 2.80mm. The two date discs are seemingly flush with each other. However, close examination reveals the right hand disc to be slightly higher. The scale and execution of the date disc confer excellent legibility.

Finally, below the maker’s nomen, the dial is adorned with a glorious sea of Clous de Paris motif. 

The case

Irrespective of which case material is selected, each model incorporates rubber inserts, fixed both to the case and bracelet. The rubber inserts not only enliven the appearance of the watch, but also prove practical in protecting it from damage.

F.P. Journe Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante - split-seconds chronograph with monopusher and large-date display

The bracelet links are hollow, mitigating weight and, as a result, enhancing wearer comfort. The links attached to the case are also articulated in order to adapt the bracelet to different wrist sizes. The watch exudes a masculine air owing to its generous proportions. The case has a diameter of 44mm and a thickness of 12mm.

The blue bezel is inlaid with ceramic and features an eye-catching typeface. Beyond the elegance of the numerals on the bezel, they unequivocally proclaim meaning.

Adjacent the rubber coated crown, with its rope-like knurling, sit two rectangular-shaped push-pieces. The push-piece at 2 o’clock combines three functions, namely, start, stop and reset. The second push-piece at 4 o’clock operates the rattrapante. The push-pieces operate with a superb silken action.

The movement

The F. P. Journe Calibre 1518 is entirely manufactured and assembled at the Swiss company’s Geneva-based Manufacture. The hand-wound movement, visible via the exhibition case-back, is formed of 18-carat rose gold for those models encased in noble metals. The movement for the titanium version is made of an aluminium alloy.

F.P. Journe Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante - split-seconds chronograph with monopusher and large-date display

A 6-pillar column wheel immediately distinguishes this movement as a purist’s choice. Actuating the chronograph confers a jump-free starting motion. The rim of the balance wheel is fitted with four masselottes which reduce air turbulence, hence aiding precision. The movement incorporates a free-sprung balance, mitigating positional errors. The frequency of the balance is 21,600 VpH (3Hz) and the movement is composed of 285 parts, including 29 jewels. The chronograph has a power reserve of 80 hours.

F.P. Journe Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante - split-seconds chronograph with monopusher and large-date display

Beyond its technical attributes, the Calibre 1518 showcases F.P. Journe’s impressive finishing. The mainplate is adorned with perlage, while the bridges are decorated with circular Côtes de Genève motif and gleaming anglage. The levers and other steel work feature straight graining. The screw sinks and jewels sinks are highly polished. Even the screw heads are polished to a brilliant shine and include chamfered slots. An artisan’s hands have deftly granted this movement with a matchless level of finishing.

Closing remarks

The F.P. Journe Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante is exquisite. Its appearance is modern but does not abandon the magical essence of F.P.Journe’s dressier timepieces. The intelligent use of rubber elements provides not only style but adds a dose of impact-resistant practicality.

The Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante fulfils its time-keeping duties with aplomb, succinctly conversing with the wearer while brimming with style. Despite looking different from F.P. Journe’s classical watches, this timepiece continues to uphold some of the brand’s key design elements, including the company’s legendary large date display.

The Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante cleverly combines all of the chronograph functions on one push-piece at 2 o’clock. This push-piece, starts, stops and resets the chronograph function. The rattrapante is operated by the second push-piece at 4 o’clock. Unlike most rattrapantes which feature three push-pieces, this watch capably manages with only two push-pieces and as a result exhibits a much cleaner appearance.

I am especially drawn to the movement. Presented in 18-carat rose gold movement it is thoughtfully specified and delightfully finished, reinforcing the reason F.P. Journe’s watches are held in the highest esteem.

It is for the many aforementioned reasons that this maison is a shining paragon of haute horlogerie and, understandably, a darling of the auction-room scene. The F.P. Journe Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante sustains the watch company’s reputation while successfully embracing a wholly new aesthetic.

Further information

Technical specification

  • Model: F.P. Journe Chronographe Monopoussir Rattrapante
  • Case: Platinum PT 950; diameter 44mm; height 12.1mm; sapphire crystal to front and case-back
  • Functions: Hours; Minutes; large date; chronograph; tachymeter scale
  • Movement: Calibre 1518; hand-wound movement; frequency 21,600 VpH (3Hz); 29 jewels; power reserve over 80 hours
  • Strap: Platinum PT 950 bracelet with rubber inserts and folding clasp
  • Price: CHF 106,000 including tax (RRP as at 7.3.2018)
  • Alternative versions: Titanium – CHF 58,000; 18-carat red gold – CHF 78,000

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