Chopard’s full team of GPMH timepieces is ready to race...
It seems that nobody can get enough of motorsports, or sportscars of any sort, for that matter. Not content with ‘just’ the Mille Miglia, Chopard boasts two other automotive-inspired collections under its ‘Classic Racing’ umbrella – ‘Superfast’ and a longer mouthful, the ‘Grand Prix de Monaco Historique’, or GPMH for short. First off, what’s this GPMH about? It was kick-started in 1997 to celebrate the 700th anniversary of the reign of the Grimaldi dynasty, the then-and-now rulers of Monaco. Held once every two years, the GPMH is intended to recreate the thrills of the seminal Monaco Grand Prix, as more than 200 drivers from 19 countries compete in historical Grand Prix racing cars of vintages between 1920s to 1985.
And how is Chopard involved in the GPMH? Well, the brand has been official timekeeper and sponsor since the third edition of the race in 2002, and has for 2014 launched a series of other variants, in addition to a chronograph model. The brand’s involvement with the GPMH should come as no big surprise, considering how Mr. Karl-Friedrich Scheufele, Chopard’s co-president, is a keen aficionado of historical cars. The timepieces in the collection are inspired by the classic racing cars in terms of aesthetics, finishing and performance. In a nod towards the trend of modern oversized timepieces, the titanium-steel cases of the models in the GPMH range are executed in a credible 44.5mm diameter, even though the range is intended to celebrate a more elegant and genteel era of racing. The range of ‘tropical’ calfskin leather straps (perforations in the strap help ventilate and are also reminiscent of vintage racing gloves) with yellow contrast stitching evokes a certain nostalgia. More interesting is the optional NATO-style strap that has in more modern times, enjoyed a rekindled interest thanks to Tudor’s Heritage series, which helps endow Chopard’s powerful machines with a rugged, tool-watch vibe.
[Read more about Chopard in issue 27 of TopGear Singapore]