The provenance of Ulysse Nardin Ocean Race Diver Chronograph might be a small, landlocked country, but thanks to its marine chronometers, the brand from Le Locle has always been closely associated with the sea since 1846. By the 1870s, Ulysse Nardin supplied more than 50 navies and merchant marine companies with precision marine deck chronometers. Today, the brand underscores its maritime credentials as the official timing partner of the exciting Ocean Race. Regarded as the longest (60,000 km) and toughest round-the-world team sailing challenge since 1973, the 14th edition of The Ulysse Nardin Ocean Race Diver Chronograph kicked off in Alicante, Spain, in January 2023. Docking in nine cities around the globe over six months and finishing in Genoa in June, the teams have embarked on their fifth leg from Newport, Rhode Island, to Aarhus, Denmark. Taking advantage of the pit stop in Rhode Island and celebrating The Ocean Race’s 50th anniversary, Ulysse Nardin unveiled a 100-piece edition of its Ulysse Nardin Ocean Race Diver Chronograph .
Originally known as the Whitbread Round the World Race and then the Volvo Ocean Race, the newly christened Ocean Race is a legendary sailing competition pitting racing crews on the high seas. As the race’s official timekeeper, Ulysse Nardin tracks the timings of the different legs and is also a partner of the 24-Hour Speed Challenge, in which the crew that covers the greatest distance in 24 hours wins. Consider that in the right conditions, these yachts can cover 600+ nautical miles in 24 hours. Making hay while the sun shines, UN also unfurls its flag in support of the Time to Act programme that aims to reduce the impact of pollution, climate change and industrial overfishing in our oceans.
The chronograph celebrating The Ulysse Nardin Ocean Race Diver Chronograph is a member of UN’s contemporary Diver family with a black, white and light blue colour scheme. Designed to evoke the lightweight carbon hulls of the racing yachts competing in The Ocean Race, the case is crafted in titanium and the unidirectional bezel in Carbonium
, producing the signature marbled mottled effect associated with carbon. As the brand explains, the material used in the bezel is made from upcycled fibres from aeroplane fuselage offcuts that have a 40% lower impact on the environment than other carbon composites.
The sandblasted and satin-finished black DLC titanium case of this 300m water-resistant Chronograph Diver has a diameter of 44mm. The white numerals and markers on the concave bezel are raised, and the 0 is treated with Super-LumiNova. Two pushers, one with a light blue ring to start the chronograph, flank the large screw-down crown.
The sandblasted black dial hosts three slightly recessed sub-dials to relay the 30-minute elapsed times of the chronograph at 3 o’clock, the 12-hour chronograph totaliser and date aperture at 6 o’clock and running seconds at 9 o’clock. Matching the light blue ring on the top chronograph pusher and the 5-minute markings on the bezel, the chronograph hands and the seconds track are light blue. All the hands and indices are treated with a blue-glowing Super-LumiNova. The black rubber strap with pin buckle features a black ceramic element at 6 o’clock engraved with The Ocean Race logo.
The Ocean Race 50th anniversary logo is stamped on the sapphire caseback, revealing the brand’s in-house, automatic, integrated, column-wheel chronograph movement with a 48-hour power reserve. As the precursor of the use of silicon (silicium at UN), the escapement is made from silicon and beats at a modern 4Hz frequency.