Watches TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Skipper: Sailing Time

3 min

Measuring speed is in TAG Heuer’s DNA, as decades of iconic racecar- and aviation-inspired timepieces suggest. The new TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Skipper, however, tells the story of the brand’s love affair with sea and sail.

TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Skipper, Reference CBS2241.FN8023

The timepiece has history. In 1967, the New York Yacht Club was preparing its 12-meter Intrepid to compete against Australia in the grueling America’s Cup. Jack Heuer, whose company had expertise in making outstanding stopwatches and even tide indicators, decided to equip the team with a full set of timing instruments, notably wristwatches with the crucial countdown function for the start of the race. The Intrepid won the bout hands down, so, to celebrate the victory, Heuer planned a special celebratory wristwatch: the hand-wound Carrera Chronograph Skipper, manufactured in a limited edition of only 20 pieces.

TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Skipper, Reference CBS2241.FN8023

But the Skipper was made for posterity. The 36-millimeter Carrera case provided a full view of a sea-blue dial traversed by a bright-red chronograph hand. The small seconds dial was in a bold teal, like the deck of the Intrepid. Opposite, at 3 o’clock, was the 15-minute countdown subdial in three colors, green, teal – again – and red. The unconventional burst of colors evoked the coded world of regatta flags, red for portside, green for starboard, and teal for stern, and it also captured the youthful, carefree, and flowery spirit of the late Sixties. Right off the drawing board, it was a genuine icon.

To the delight of collectors and fans today, the TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Skipper is back in circulation in a bolder 39-millimeter, rose-gold case reminiscent of the sun setting on the ocean. It has been carefully modernized. The small seconds have been repositioned to 6 o’clock, for instance, where they discreetly tick over a date aperture. The teal subdial at 9 o’clock is now reserved for a twelve-hour counter that bears the name of the watch, Skipper. The three segments of the countdown subdial exhibit crisper colors, namely lagoon green, teal, and regatta orange. Readability has been prioritized, with triangular markers and red-tipped minute and hour hands.

TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Skipper, Reference CBS2241.FN8023

To ensure that the Skipper remains a tool watch, the entire architecture was reworked to better expose the memorable dial. Most noticeable is the choice of the signature sapphire Glassbox crystal, which offers an uncluttered view into the watch and enabling 100-meter water-resistance. The flange and indexes have been subtly curved upward to provide more visual depth as well.

Driving the Skipper is the self-winding, in-house TH20-06 caliber, which beats at 28,800 vph and provides 80 hours of power reserve, quite enough for a weekend of real sailing, so it’s time to raise the anchor.