Historically, watch brands have supported and partnered with athletic events and races. The youthful Swiss brand Norqain joined this effort in 2019 when it teamed up with Matterhorn Ultraks, a skyrunning marathon in Zermatt. Since then, Norqain has been the official timekeeper of prestigious races. These include the TCS New York City Marathon in late 2022 and the Dubai Marathon in early 2023. The brand will also be the official timekeeper of this year’s Ochsner Sport Zürich Marathon, which takes place tomorrow, April 22nd. To celebrate, Norqain released the Wild One Zürich Marathon Limited Edition in a super exclusive run of 20 units. 

Highlights of the Norqain Wild One 

Norqain’s evolution has been well documented on Fratello in the past few years. Our very own Nacho wrote a detailed article about the Wild One in October of 2022. I recommend reading his article to learn all about this collection and what makes the Wild One unique. To put this new release in perspective, let’s discuss a few core specifications that make the Wild One the perfect choice for a marathon. At the core of this model lie the unique case construction and shock absorption technology designed for high-intensity sports. The case is made of a proprietary material called Norteq, which I’ll do my best to explain below. 

To make complicated engineering simple, Norteq refers to the unique case material developed in partnership with BIWI. This Swiss company is an expert in developing new materials made from rubber, plastic, and silicone. Norteq is comprised of a lightweight and ultra-resistant carbon composite and other high-performance materials. The case of the Wild One has a unique construction made of 25 parts. These include, among others, the Norteq cage, a proprietary shock-absorbing element on the outside of the case, and a titanium casing for the movement. This means the Wild One is appropriately named to be worn on extreme adventures. The watch can withstand forces of 5,000 Gs. To put this in perspective, we humans can only withstand 9,000 Gs for just a few seconds before passing out. 

Key specifications 

Besides the Norteq technology, the Wild One comes with other important specifications. The case measures 42mm wide, 49.40mm long, 12.30mm thick, and 22mm between the lugs. Its screw-down crown and case back provide a 200m water resistance rating, and it dons sapphire crystals on the front and the back. Inside this case beats the Kenissi-produced caliber NN20/1, which ticks away at 4Hz (28,800vph) and provides a 70-hour power reserve. To complete the robust package, the Wild One Zürich Marathon comes with a white or black mesh rubber strap with a black buckle. The entire package weighs just 84g, making it sufficiently lightweight for the most intense races and activities.  

Norqain Wild One Zürich Marathon Limited Edition

The Norqain Wild One Zürich Marathon Limited Edition

Usually, when brands create a limited edition for a particular event, they release a pre-existing model with a dial in a different color. Norqain went a few steps further with the Wild One Zürich Marathon Limited Edition. The legible dial displays a monochromatic map of Zürich with the path of the race highlighted in blue. To make things even more special, this version of the Wild One comes with a bright blue rubber shock absorber, echoing the color accent on the dial. The dial pattern works well with the marble effect of the carbon composite in the Norteq material. 

The Zürich Marathon is famous for being the biggest and fastest marathon in Switzerland. It runs alongside the banks of Lake Zürich, which gives runners a unique opportunity to admire the breathtaking panorama of the Alps. In this context, any mechanical watch used for a fast-paced marathon should be rather special. While the 41mm case might not fit every runner’s wrist, its 89g weight and striking visual appeal make up for the case diameter. Furthermore, the strap, with its rubber construction, helps make the Wild One Zürich Marathon Limited Edition a perfect timekeeping device for a runner. 

Final thoughts

If you plan on partaking in this year’s Zürich Marathon, you will be happy to know that you can get yourself a rather unique souvenir of the event. Once again, only 20 units of the Wild One Zürich Marathon Limited Edition will be available, both from Norqain’s website or the brand’s official retailers in Zürich, Galli Uhren Bijouterie AG and Bucherer. This model retails for CHF 5,150. You can learn more about it by visiting the brand’s website here