Max Verstappen Hit the Bahrain F1 Track in a Legendary Racing Watch


Over the past few seasons, 26-year-old Max Verstappen has completely dominated on the track in Formula 1, racking up more records and awards than you can shake a stick at.

But it was the watch on his wrist that caught our attention this past week at F1 Testing in Bahrain. Released last fall, the TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph in 18K 3N Gold is an updated take on the famed ref. 1158 CHN, an automatic, solid-gold Carrera given to select Ferrari drivers whom the Swiss watch brand endorsed back in the early 1970s. Jacky Ickx, Niki Lauda, and Clay Regazzoni all wore the original, which is still one of 92-year-old Jack Heuer’s favorite references.

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In the late 1960s, Heuer was one of several brands racing to develop the automatic chronograph; by the 1970s, it was outfitting several of its famed model lines with its new Calibre 11 and its offshoots. (Perhaps most famous was the Monaco, worn by Steve McQueen in Le Mans and still widely associated with the American actor and driver.) By 1971, Heuer had retooled its Carrera line—with its new C-shaped case—to accommodate the automatic movement, ushering in a completely new era for its driver’s watch. The ref. 1158 CHN, with its solid-gold case, automatic workings, and 12-hour chronograph, was the Carrera taken to its luxurious conclusion—not dissimilar to a precious-metal Royal Oak or Nautilus as the elevated version of a time-only sports watch.

The new(ish) TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph isn’t a perfect dead-ringer for the original—housed in the brand’s Glassbox case, it features a triple-register layout, a more typical chronograph arrangement with both pushers and crown situated on the right, and a round (rather than C-shaped) profile. Still, many Heuer fans were delighted by the reemergence of such a desirable watch, whose low production numbers have made owning an original an expensive proposition indeed. (To be fair, owning the new one ain’t exactly cheap, either—it retails for $21,500, and looks to be currently sold through on the brand’s website.)

The Carrera’s also been having something of a moment lately—ever since the Glassbox’s launch early last year, talk of the model family seems to be on the tip of everyone’s tongue. And Barbie—during which Ryan Gosling is adorned with various Carrerii, including the original 1158 CHN—has almost certainly brought the model to the awareness of younger generations, none of whom have memories of watching Jacky Ickx whip around a track. More recently, when Gosling wore a one-off version with a solid-gold Milanese bracelet (which was available on the 1158), it sent watch guys’ heads spinning.

These days, drivers—much like tennis players—are often handed a watch by a stylist or team member to wear for a photo opp at the podium. But seeing a modern version of a classic racing watch on Verstappen’s wrist, even if during a practice run, brings back memories (real and imagined) of the golden age of racing. And the golden age of watches.

Colman Domingo’s Omega De Ville Prestige

Colman Domingo poses on the red carpet upon arrival at the BAFTA British Academy Film Awards

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Nominated for Best Actor for his leading role in Rustin, Colman Domingo wore an elegant and understated Omega at the 77th Annual BAFTA Awards. Launched in 1960 as a subset of the Seamaster line, the De Ville became its own collection in 1967, with a sub-collection, Prestige, launching in 1994. Domingo’s watch, a De Ville Prestige, is a 40mm, automatic piece with a domed silver dial, an outer railroad minute track, a date window at 6 o’clock, and a matching, stainless steel multi-link bracelet. Perhaps not traditional dress watch fare, it’s nevertheless a handsome piece that looked fetching with Domingo’s playful take on black tie.

Barry Keoghan’s Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra

Barry Keoghan attends the 2024 EE BAFTA Film Awards

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Likewise nominated for Best Actor at the BAFTAs was Irish heartthrob Barry Keoghan, whose wristwear was notable for its size. Measuring 34mm, the Seamaster Aqua Terra he rocked features a steel and Sedna gold case, a beautiful blue wave dial, a date window at 6 o’clock, and Omega’s automatic Master Chronometer Calibre 8800 movement, which is visible via a sapphire caseback. Technically, this reference is part of Omega’s ladies’ watch collection—but you know what? It works perfectly on Keoghan’s wrist, diameter be damned. (We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: Men need to be this comfortable wearing small watches again.)

Simi Liu’s IWC Portugieser Perpetual Calendar ref. IW503302

Simu Liu arrives to the 2024 People's Choice Awards

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Simu Liu wasn’t content to rock one excellent watch during his gig hosting the 2024 People’s Choice Awards in Santa Monica this past week—he actually wore three IWC pieces throughout the evening. Our favorite was definitely the Portugieser Perpetual Calendar ref. IW503302. The Portugieser family took shape in the 1930s when the International Watch Company received a request for an oversized wristwatch from two Portuguese clients, which the company filled by adopting a pocket watch caliber for the wrist. The Portugieser collection lives on today, with Liu’s ref. IW503302 representing the ultimate, super-complicated version: It’s a perpetual calendar, much like the one Hans Zimmer wore to the premiere of Dune: Part II, but in an 18-karat 5N gold case.

Luka Doncic’s Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Chronograph ref. 26240BC

Luka Doncic arrives to the arena before the NBA AllStar Game

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Dallas Mavericks point guard Luka Doncic wore a beautiful Royal Oak to the 2024 NBA All-Star Game last week. The ref. 26240BC, a special edition made for the Japanese market, features an unusual (and beautiful) hammered pattern to its white gold case and bracelet, the result of which is a sparkling, diamond-like pattern that adorns nearly the entire watch. Paired with a smoked, light blue dial in the model family’s famed Grand Tapisserie pattern, it’s powered by an automatic, in-house movement from Audemars Piguet with flyback capability—meaning the chronograph doesn’t need to be stopped before being reset. In a sea of special and limited- edition Royal Oaks, this one is a standout.



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