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featured 13, Jun 2017 04:06pm
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Paul Newman's “Paul Newman” Rolex Daytona

The ultimate Rolex Daytona, the “Paul Newman” will be offered during the inaugural Phillips New York Watch Auction, scheduled for 26th October, 2017.

Phillips Auction House, in association with Bacs & Russo will be launching its inaugural New York Watch Auction with some of the Legendary timepieces of the 20th Century. This “Winning Icons” themed auction, dedicated to some of the most iconic watch collectors of the last century, is scheduled to take place on the 26th October, 2017.

Offering some of the most sought-after timepieces available in the market, the collection also includes the legendary Rolex “Paul Newman” Cosmograph Daytona, which was owned and worn by known Hollywood legend, Paul Newman himself.

Sought to be one of the most collectible mechanical wristwatch, the “Paul Newman” Daytona, reference 6239 fitted with Rolex's “exotic” dial, was the first ever model of the Cosmograph Daytona series which were produced from 1963 – 70. The “Paul Newman” was the first chronograph by Rolex which came with a tachymeter scale engraved on the bezel in order to measure speed.

The chronograph with a tachymeter was chosen especially for Paul Newman by his wife, Joanne Woodward, as she was uncomfortable with his passion for motor racing. The caseback of the watch is engraved with the inscription, “Drive Carefully Me”.

It is this very timepiece which played an important role during the 1980's when the era of watch collecting began to grow. The “Paul Newman” features the red “Daytona” designation at 6 o'clock with a red outer seconds track.

"Pop handed James his Rolex and said, “if you can remember to wind this each day, it tells pretty good time." Elinor “Nell” Newman Daughter of Paul Newman

The watch has been offered up for auction, courtesy Paul Newman's daughter, Elinor “Nell” Newman, and her close friend James Cox. It was during the summer of 1984 when James had stayed behind to help Paul Newman rebuild the tree house on their property, known as the “Nook House” - a portrayal of the longevity of Joanne and Paul's 50-year marriage - when James came in possession of the wristwatch.

Nell Newman recalled the story below, in her signed letter accompanying the watch:

The tree house was perched in a large oak tree that cantilevered over the Aspetuck River at my childhood home in Westport, Connecticut. We had two family homes, one on each side of the river. That summer Pop was living in one, and James was living in the other. Pop would frequent the river bank to check on James’ progress. During one such encounter, Pop asked James if he knew the time. Apparently Pop forgot to wind his wristwatch that morning. James responded that he didn’t know the time and didn’t own a watch. Pop handed James his Rolex and said, “if you can remember to wind this each day, it tells pretty good time.”

Needless to say, James preserved the watch in all its original condition, since that day. Today, Nell and James have decided to sell the timepiece in order to support the Nell Newman Foundation – a charity dedicated to organic foods and sustainable agriculture, whilst echoing her father's philanthropic values.

The watch will be offered by Phillips during the New York Watch Auction as one of the most storied and vintage watches of all time, on the 26th October, 2017.

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