It isn’t every day we cover Italian designed and made watches, but this new Racing Chrono from Officina Del Tempo is worthy of note. The brand’s first sport watch to house a Swiss-Made Ronda Caliber 5030 – the bold RACING CHRONO GEL, Ref. OT1051, features an unusual and complex construction concept for the case that was more than a year in the research and development stages.
Instead of the bezel, crystal and screw-in caseback being attached to the main case, as in typical watches, in this innovative watch, these pieces create the case as a function of the assembly. Essentially, there is no main case, but rather all of the afore mentioned parts are required to complete the case as a whole, with four main screws holding all parts together and to secure it to 10 atm water resistance (100 meters). In total, the 44-48.5 mm case is a work of 40 parts. To build the Racing Chrono Gel OT1051, the sapphire crystal is attached via a pressure “O” ring, the case shoulders are equipped with rubber inserts over the pins that hold the gel strap in place, and there is a hardened composite plastic inset along the bezel for harmonious design balance that only the Italians can achieve so beautifully.
Even the dials of the watches in this series are complex and technical, featuring multi-layered and part honeycomb workmanship. The Arabic numerals at 12:00 and 6:00 are carved into the chapter ring and are boldly treated in Superluminova for easy night-time readability. The center of the dial featuers a triangular plate with a “Cotes de Genève” finishing on it, and from which the bold Superluminova chronograph second hand and subdials emerge. The watch offers a 60-minutes coutner and an arc-shaped date indicator marked with a color-coordinated arrow at 4:00. The gel band introduces new elements, such as the locking system through the end of the strap, so that it remains anchored after the passage into the buckle. The watch is availabline in steel, or in all black IP with several bold color variations including a black dial with striking white, yellow or orange accents, a whtie dial with bold red accents, a blue dial with yellow accetns or a startling orange dial with black and white accents. It retails for $895 in steel, or for $925 in full IP black.