Omega Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon Alinghi
The Omega Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon Alinghi is the latest creation from the luxury watch brand based in Biel/Bienne. It features a plethora of exquisite details and celebrates the partnership between Omega and Alinghi, the highly successful competitive sailing team.
Every self-respecting horophile knows that when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked on the moon, the first men to accomplish this feat, they both wore an Omega Speedmaster. The model was used on all subsequent Apollo missions.
The Apollo 8 astronauts were the first humans to view the dark side of the moon with their own eyes. In 2013, Omega unveiled the inaugural version of the ‘Dark Side of the Moon’. It proved a bewitching spectacle with its black, sultry tones.
Now the Swiss marque has unveiled the Omega Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon Alinghi. Its tried and trusted namesake has provided the core elements for this new sailing-themed watch. However, this latest model sports some very appealing differences.
Both sides of the movement are embellished with a honeycomb motif with the verso side visible via the sapphire crystal, fooling the wearer into believing it is the dial. The only clue that things may not be quite as they first appear is with the visible levers which are presented dial-side.
At 6 o’clock, the Alinghi logo rotates when the chronograph is in use. The dark hues are enlivened with judiciously applied soupçons of red throughout. A perforated black rubber strap heightens the visual excitement, courtesy of its red rubber lining which peeps through the aforementioned holes. The Omega Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon Alinghi is endowed with a beautifully decorated version of the hand-wound Calibre 1865.
A watch for the courageous
Alinghi, the famous competitive sailing team, was established in 1994 by Ernesto Bertarelli. The team has competed in an array of boats, enjoying the sweet taste of success on many occasions and winning the prestigious America’s Cup on two occasions. In 2019, Omega formed a partnership with Alinghi. Since the relationship was established, both companies have witnessed success with the team winning the GC32 world title in June 2019.
When Armstrong and Aldrin walked on the moon, they demonstrated incredible courage. They placed their faith in others and were reliant on their colleagues back at base. Likewise, competitive sailing is not for the faint-hearted. The twin hulls of a GC32 catamaran are firmly in the water, however, once the boat reaches sufficient speed, large foils rise it out of the water and the boat effectively flies at speeds approaching 40 knots. At this point, the boat can easily capsize or nose-dive.
Crew members sit on the outside of the boat, trying to keep it as flat as possible in order to heighten the speed. At some point, as the wind direction changes, crew members must run across a flexible bridge spanning both hulls, optimising the balance of the boat. At all times they must exercise great caution not to get struck by the boom or fall overboard. Indeed, there are some horrible tales of sailors being struck by a foil at speed. Needless to say, the crew of the Alinghi boat show incredible bravery.
The brand’s press release (July 2020)
The dynamic partnership between OMEGA and ALINGHI has brought the very best of Swiss precision, innovation and pioneering spirit together. In tribute to this unique sailing collaboration, a brand new OMEGA timepiece has now been launched.
The Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon ALINGHI is a watch that demonstrates the same values and qualities that both partners share.
As explained by Raynald Aeschlimann, President and CEO of OMEGA, “The new watch is about two great Swiss brands combining their passion for innovation and sailing. To match ALINGHI’s state-of-the-art boat creation, we’ve harnessed some truly impressive technology, along with the best materials and a very original design concept.”
The choice of Speedmaster perfectly reflects the fast boats that fly across the water. Perhaps most impressive is the watch’s expertly decorated Calibre 1865. The manual-winding movement is ideal for sailing crews due to its lighter and thinner design. To enhance the movement, OMEGA has taken inspiration from ALINGHI’s new TF35 catamaran. Using laser ablation, the mainplate and barrel bridge have been given a honeycomb effect, similar to the interior of the ALINGHI boat’s carbon hull. The same laser ablation technology has then been employed to decorate all other bridges with a black carbon pattern, also inspired by the carbon that is used for the boat’s hull.
For the overall colour coding, OMEGA has matched the watch with the ALINGHI logo, which includes red to represent passion, and black for technology. This can be seen through features such as the perforated black and red rubber strap, as well as the 44.25 mm case in black zirconium oxide ceramic. Along with a tachymeter scale in Super-LumiNova, the outward design is also notable for the ALINGHI logo on the stop/start pusher, which has been created in red varnish.
Two of the watch’s subdials are also worthy of attention. At 3 o’clock, a 4-minute or 5-minute tactical time display has been included in red, helping with precision on the water. At 6 o’clock, the traditional subdial design has been replaced with a sandblasted and anodized aluminium disc, which features the ALINGHI logo transferred in red. The team’s logo represents the letter “a” and is inspired by two boats churning the seas before the start of a match race. The logo rotates on the watch when the chronograph function is used.
Ernesto Bertarelli, Founder and President of ALINGHI, says, “It’s been an immense pleasure to collaborate so closely with OMEGA on this wonderful new timepiece. Throughout our history, we’ve been very aware of the watchmaker’s incredible expertise in sports timekeeping and passion for sailing. So, it is a very special moment to have worked on a watch together and now see the exquisite results. It’s the perfect start to our relationship and a real sign of more to come in the future.
OMEGA and ALINGHI formed their partnership in 2019, and have already enjoyed racing success thanks to the team’s GC32 world title in June 2019, D35 Trophy win in September and GC32 championship in November.