We’re down to the quarter-final stage, and there is a disturbing number of Speedmasters left in the last eight. We limited the Omega entrants to just four places, but all four of them are still standing. Today, Rob’s Racing Speedy goes up against Dave’s surprise package, the Fortis B-42.

Rob: Well, well, well, what have we here? An Anglo-Irish showdown. The clash of “Bob” and Rob. A match-up nobody saw coming (except perhaps Fortis). The fact a B-42 has made it to the final eight in a competition created to find the world’s best modern racing chronograph is a stunning testament to the brand’s current reputation. But while Fortis is flying high, with its head so frequently above the clouds (and sometimes poking all the way up into the stratosphere), the Omega Speedmaster is down on Planet Earth, marshaling the track as any half-decent racing chronograph should.

But this isn’t just any racing chronograph. It is the best one in this competition. I know we’re about to see the dead-eyed killers march into the semi-finals, but I’m not scared. If I’m going down, I’m going down swinging. But I won’t be going down today.

Omega Speedmaster Racing 001

Image courtesy of Hodinkee

Omega Speedmaster Racing Co-Axial Master Chronometer — A worthy opponent put to the sword

You know I love Fortis. How could I not? We work together closely and we do awesome work together for the benefit of the whole watchmaking industry. That kind of thing forms a bond between man and brand. But, as much of a Fortis fanboy as I am, I remain a realist first. The sharp end of this contest is no place for a pilot’s watch, no matter how sexy the B-42 happens to be.

Omega Speedmaster Racing

Image courtesy of Hodinkee

I’ve said this before, but I’ll say it again: as the team’s resident Kraken/corrupt competition official, I chose this model for myself out of all 32 competitors. I did it because I was leaving the role of Managing Editor and no longer felt the paternal responsibility to protect my writers’ feelings by giving them the top seeds as I had done in all previous contests whenever they asked for them. It isn’t so much that I wanted to “win” this contest; I simply wanted to go to bat for the model I personally believe to be the best-suited to the task.

Omega Speedmaster Racing

Image courtesy of A Blog To Watch

The real test will come in the semi-finals where another Speedmaster will surely await. Still, I believe this dyed-in-the-wool racer will make it through to the big dance. At that point, it will have to take out either the Rolex Daytona or the Ed White 321 if the big hitters keep swinging. Can it demount either? I’m going to say, YES! But first, sling me a vote so I can get past this worthy competitor, who I must, as much as it pains me, put to the sword once and for all.

Dave — Enter, the B-42 Cosmonauts Chronograph

Okay, okay, so Rob is proud of his racing chronograph. Sure, the Speedmaster was designed to be used by racing car drivers, and it fully ticks all the boxes of a racing chronograph. So does the B-42 Cosmonauts Chronograph, though. It ticks all those same boxes, and then it doesn’t stop, and it carries on ticking. That’s my point here. The Fortis B-42 Cosmonauts Chronograph is a chronograph for all situations. So, once The Fast And The Fratelli is done and dusted, my friendly Fortis will be up and ready to take on the next challenge. It’s a hungry beast with an insatiable appetite to perform and impress, and it does just that. I took umbrage reading through his argument when he described the mighty B-42 Cosmonaut’s Chronograph as just “a pilot’s watch”. If we’re being totally accurate here, old man, this is an astronauts’ watch, but trying to define the B-42 Cosmonaut’s Chronograph to just one genre is a foolhardy pursuit indeed.

A watch for the many, not for the few

The B-42 Cosmonauts Chronograph just offers more than the Speedmaster. How can a watch that offers less functionality for more money be considered the better watch in this contest? The B-42 Cosmonauts Chronograph is a watch for the entire racing team, not just the drivers. As we have to remember, a racing team is more than just its driver. A driver can’t do squat without a team of engineers making sure the car is running at optimum capacity. If there’s no team of analysts ensuring the car is set up and tuned for the current conditions, the driver is hung out to dry. The B-42 Cosmonauts Chronograph offers functions that the whole team can use. So for that reason, I genuinely believe that it’s the logical victor in this matchup.

The Fortis deserves your vote

I also believe that this is an entrant for the people. All too often, we are used to the venerable Speedmaster dismantling all those who stand before it… except in the March Mania contest. In March Mania, the Fratelli voted with their hearts and refused to let the Speedmaster walk its way to victory once again. So I am calling upon the people that like to root for the underdog. In this David vs. Goliath fight, David deserves to win, but he’ll need your voting fingers to make sure that justice is served.

So, who are you voting for? Will it be Rob’s Omega Speedmaster Racing? Or Dave’s Fortis B-42 Cosmonauts Chronograph?

The Fast And The Fratelli — Omega Speedmaster Racing Vs. Fortis B-42

Which Watch Wins This Race?

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