Some watch collectors are omnivorous, grazing from across the landscape of brand names, types, and kinds of pieces. Other folks hunt down parts in a one genre: racing, pilots, or divers watches. Some others still obsess about buying the extremely finest from a one brand. But there are also a couple extremely special styles that, entirely on their have, beckon hordes of collectors. The Rolex Cosmograph Daytona—which arrives in stainless steel, established with a rainbow of sapphires, in platinum, with exotic dials, and 18-carat yellow gold, and so on—is 1 of all those watches.
As Hodinkee founder Ben Clymer just lately wrote in an ode to chronograph watches in GQ, “these 3 [the Daytona, the Omega Speedmaster, and the Heuer Carrera] signify entire categories of collecting and scholarship unto themselves, and about the past 7 a long time they have rightly achieved a stage of appreciation that in some scenarios surpasses even the models that deliver them.” The Daytona is the top crown jewel: it is given as a prize to the winner of the 24 Hours at Daytona race, and Jay-Z made use of it as an invite for VIPs to his gala. And it smashes documents: in 2015 it turned the most pricey Rolex at any time when Eric Clapton’s previous “Oyster Albino” bought for $1.4 million, and it broke the record for most high-priced look at at any time in 2017 when Paul Newman’s went for $17.8 million. Down below, collectors like Michael Jordan, John Mayer, and Jay demonstrate the total breadth of the beloved Daytona.
John Mayer’s “Rainbow” Daytona reference 116598
In the 2nd installment of John Mayer’s “Talking Watches” video with Hodinkee, he talked by 11–eleven!—Daytonas! This just one, with a rainbow of 36 sapphires, may possibly not in good shape exactly with the model’s ordinarily sporty lineage, but damn, is it entertaining. “I never rather know who the focus on audience is if you are hunting at the aesthetic,” Mayer reported in the video clip. “When these to start with arrived out everyone imagined they have been as well significantly. The mindset on a Rainbow Daytona when they first came out was ‘Yuck. Who would do that? Who would go so far?’ Anything transpired which is excellent where the joy of gathering superseded the craziness of the design of these watches.” Mayer, of course, did not feel they were being as well considerably. He brought multiple diamond- and sapphire-established Daytonas to the desk and cops to sporting them often.
Michael Jordan’s 50th-anniversary version, reference 116506
In 2013, expectations have been higher for what Rolex would cook dinner up to commemorate the Dayton’s 50th anniversary. The end result is this quite surprising but exquisite version of the Daytona: the incredibly 1st in platinum, with an ice-blue dial and chocolate-y bezel. It makes perception that Michael Jordan, who seems hellbent on scouring the earth for the strangest timepieces in existence, would make this incredibly exclusive oddball element of his rotation.
Jonah Hill’s “John Mayer” Daytona reference 116508
Hill’s gold-and-inexperienced Daytona is a microcosm of the observe world’s peculiarities. When it debuted at the view tradeshow Baselworld in 2016, the design was fairly unloved. As opposed to virtually every single other Daytona model in existence, it sat in jewellery instances with its $34,650 pricetag. But when it arrives to enjoy value, it requires only a single human being to shift the gravity. Pursuing a Mayer shoutout in the Hodinkee movie earlier mentioned, collectors all of a sudden started off paying closer focus to the piece. The singer experienced these an outcome on the enjoy that men and women begun contacting it the “John Mayer” Daytona, and collectors are now having to pay upwards of $50,000 for it on the secondary industry.
Jay-Z’s reference 116500LN
When Jay-Z wore this check out to the 2016 NBA Finals, it was the most likely the hottest piece in the entire collecting community. Immediately after the flashy and unconventional platinum version unveiled in 2013 let down scores of Rolex fanatics, this version was a balm. In 2016, Rolex released another round of new Daytonas—and, last but not least, below was a view in stainless metal that faithfully recreated a vintage variation with a black-and-white “Panda” dial.” This Daytona frustrated collectors with its multi-calendar year waitlist. Of study course, that was not a problem for Hov.
Paul Newman’s “Big Red” Daytona reference 6263
Whilst Newman is most famous for the unique-dial Daytona that is now named just after him (and went for practically $18 million at auction), that wasn’t the only edition of the design he wore. Right after he gave that Daytona to his daughter’s boyfriend, he picked up this “Big Red” version—named for the a little bit fatter arch of textual content over the center subdial. This look at has a large amount in common with Newman’s initial: just after two several years, he passed this view down to his daughter. Like the first, it has a sweet inscription from his wife on the caseback that reads “Drive Slowly Joanne.” And this view is also coming to auction and is envisioned to demand a large quantity of cash. Phillips, the auction household providing the look at, just estimates it will go for someplace “in excessive of $1 million.”
Ed Sheeran’s “Paul Newman” Daytona reference 6239
Of program, no discussion of the Daytona would be entire without conversing about the reference 6239: the most well-known of all Daytona versions and is the variation of the check out that actually put the timepiece on the map. Simply because of its garish design and out-there artwork-deco textual content, the legend goes, the observe was originally a lousy seller on its authentic launch in the early ‘60s. Reduced income meant that Rolex created really few of the watches, which only will make them that a great deal rarer these days. The 6239 is exactly the variety of look at that a freakishly devoted collector like Sheeran would completely have to have. He even wears his on a leather bund strap, precisely the way Paul Newman did.