Welcome to the Speedmaster World Cup. In the absence of Euro 2020, we thought our beloved readers might enjoy a tournament of a different kind. We’ve assembled eight groups (A–H), each governed by a different Fratello team member. Each writer has been assigned four watches, which they will pitch to you during the group stages.

All we need you to do is vote for your favorite to move on in the competition. The next round will be the quarter-finals, which will see the eight group winners go head-to-head for your votes. The four winners progress to the semis. Following that, a third-place play-off will precede the final round, due to be held on Sunday, December 13th (get the beers in …). If you haven’t already done so, click here to vote.

Group G

Let’s face it, when you are part of Fratello, you can’t avoid the Speedmaster and its impressive history. No matter your taste, there are so many variations and configurations, it’s hard not to find one Speedy that doesn’t match your style. Unless you hate chronographs, of course. But I can’t think of anyone who doesn’t like them.

In all honesty, there wasn’t a single Speedy in my safety deposit box until I met RJ. Some ten years ago I also bought my first Speedmaster from him. And we all know how things went from there. Over time I bought a handful of different versions and we even got to design our own ones.

That said, I am incredibly thankful for what this passion has brought me over the years and how it has changed my life. Something I would have never imagined when I joined online forums a long time ago. It never hurts to look back and go through a bit of self-reflection. But it sure feels good when you realize you achieved something by doing what you love in the best way possible. That’s what makes magic happen. But enough about that, time to pass forward to the lineup of the limiteds.

Speedy Tuesday 1

That Speedmaster that probably needs no further introduction. It is also the one I probably wear the most. The Omega Speedmaster Speedy Tuesday. This watch is special for many reasons and the combo with the 1171/1 bracelet simply ticks all the boxes in my book. You can wear this on any occasion and on this rattly bracelet it is just so comfortable.

Besides the fact that we got a say in the design of the watch, I finally found the first watch for my daughter. Something I had on my mind for some time but never knew what to buy her. When she was born I wasn’t occupied with the idea to buy her a watch. That’s something that changed over time. And with the Speedy Tuesday, I found her the perfect gift. She was born on the 20th of December in 2003. As I was lucky enough to buy I will proudly give her the watch with number 2003/2012 which is a reference to her birthday when she is old enough.

So you can imagine that this Speedmaster simply has to be in the World Cup. Fighting for the win which won’t be easy because of the competition. Even when voting for one single watch in the contributions from the Fratelli it’s sometimes hard to pick a fave. All we do is present a list and pass this to you to shoot one watch in the goal for an assisted win.

Apollo XIII ref. 3595.52 

When it comes to Speedmasters it’s hard to pass anything related to Apollo 13. So when having to make a selection for the lineup there simply had to be one included. With the Snoopy versions being hijacked by someone else on the team, the other obvious choice is the Speedmaster Apollo XIII 25th anniversary model from 1995. This is probably also a good moment to mention the “Apollo 13 movie” which stunningly reproduced the events as they happened in 1970.

This World Cup warrior comes with the Apollo 13 mission patch pictured on the sub-dial at 9 o’clock. Including the Latin phrase “Ex Luna Scientia”, which translates to “from the moon, knowledge”. And although they never made it to the moon due to the known events, space exploration has brought us a lot of things over time.  

Although this model is limited to 999 pieces, there was a similar version in those cool “Mission Cases“. Similar in that the Mission Case models have Super Luminova instead of Tritium and they have a different bracelet. Anyhow, a cool Speedmaster that has the standard engravings on the case-back with the addition of “Apollo 13 Limited Series XXX/999” where XXX stands for the individual number.

Apollo XI 345.0802

When it comes to sports there is only one material for the winner, gold! So I couldn’t do this selection without a true winner although that decision is up to you of course. Yet, to me, this watch is one of my all-time favorites. It is one that doesn’t get the wrist time it deserves which is mostly due to its immaculate condition. Because it’s quite a rare watch it spends most of its time in the darkness of the safety deposit box at the bank. And it deserves more attention than that.

The Speedmaster Apollo XI 345.0802 was produced in the early ‘80s in limited quantities. Approximately 300 pieces (in yellow gold) have left the Omega factory and most were delivered to the German market. Only 20 pieces were made in white gold. Exact numbers can’t be verified but that this is a rare watch is one thing that is sure. And this watch can take the gold medal for being the first Speedmaster with a sapphire case-back.

World Cup

As we all know, the search for a watch can be both fun and challenging. And sometimes you are not searching for a new addition but it just comes along. That is exactly what happened with this gold Speedy. In the back of my mind, I wanted to buy a gold watch at some point in my early forties although it wasn’t a Speedmaster that had my interest. And out of the blue, a German watch friend presented this watch for sale. Going by the pics it already looked good but when I had it in my hand I realized it was near unworn. Definitely a potential World Cup winner in my book.

Soyuz World Cup

Apollo Soyuz

Not as limited as the Gold Apollo XI, yet another Speedy which you don’t see a lot. Thinking about it, over time I have had more Gold Speedmasters in my hand than I have this Speedmaster Apollo-Soyuz. This watch is made in a limited edition of 500 pieces which were delivered to the Italian market in 1976. An Italian Omega distributor requested this special Speedy to commemorate the successful Apollo Soyuz mission.

What makes this watch stand out is that the Omega logo is replaced by the Apollo-Soyuz mission patch at 12 o’clock. Usually, these patches find their way into the subdial(s). Another thing is that because of the placement of the mission patch, the Omega text is lowered. Because of this, the words Speedmaster and Professional didn’t make it onto the dial. This Speedy comes with slightly larger pushers which are 0.5mm larger than the standard pushers. And it is one of few Speedmasters which comes on the 1168 bracelet which somewhat resembles the Oyster bracelet. 

Soyuz World Cup

Not only is the usual text on the dial is missing, when you turn the watch around you’ll find a not-so-standard case back. Where you normally find the “Flight qualified by NASA…” and “the first watch worn on the moon”, this has something completely different. Instead, it has a relief showing a Saturn rocket over the earth. Surrounded by the text “Gemini Apollo and Soyuz” which is written in Russian. Overall an interesting Speedmaster that deserves a spot in the World Cup.

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