Rolex - The Hong Kong Watch Auction: NINE Hong Kong Monday, November 25, 2019 | Phillips
  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1997
    Reference No: 16700
    Case No: U'375'571
    Model Name: GMT-Master “Chuck Yeager”
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 3175, 31 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet stamped 78790, endlinks stamped 501, B, max length 180mm
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster deployant clasp stamped "X2"
    Dimensions: 40mm Diamter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement, clasp signed and case back stamped No. 18/50
    Accessories: Further accompanied by The Real McCoy’s Rolex Chuck Yeager Guarantee stamped The Real McCoy’s dated 14th October 1997, two extra bezel inserts, hang tags, calendar 1997-1998, instruction manual, green wallet, outer packaging and fitted presentation box

  • Catalogue Essay

    On October 14, 1947 Air Force Captain Chuck Yeager (1923) became the first man to travel faster than the speed of sound, when his Bell X-1 experimental plane flew over the Mojave Desert at Mach 1. Throughout his long and illustrious career Brigadier General Yeager has been known to wear a Rolex watch and in 1947 he wore his Rolex Oyster Perpetual wristwatch. He was so impressed with the durability of the watch that a few years following the event, Yeager sent a signed autograph image of the Bell X-1 and himself to Hans Wilsdorf, and 60 years later Rolex featured Yeager in an advertisement as a testament to his exceptional career.

    The present reference 16700 GMT-Master is a 1997 limited edition made of 50 examples by the Japanese firm, The Real McCoy’s in honor of the 40th anniversary of Yeager’s outstanding feat. The model 16700 was released in the late 1980s and featured a sapphire crystal and white gold chaton’s for the numerals. The customized Real McCoy’s examples sport a dial with a red “Chuck Yeager”, and the case back has been engraved “General Chuck E. Yeager Bell X-1 October 14, 1947 18/50 The Real McCoy’s”. In exceptional original condition with sharp lines and crisp engraving, this example is accompanied by its original guarantee and presentation box. The Rolex GMT-Master is an icon in the watch world, and it is note worth for this example to recognize a legend within the aeronautic world.

  • Artist Biography


    Swiss • 1905

    Founded in 1905 England by Hans Wilsdorf and Alfred Davis as Wilsdorf & Davis, it soon became known as the Rolex Watch Company in 1915, moving its headquarters to Geneva in 1919. Like no other company, the success of the wristwatch can be attributed to many of Rolex's innovations that made them one of the most respected and well-known of all luxury brands. These innovations include their famous "Oyster" case — the world's first water resistant and dustproof watch case, invented in 1926 — and their "Perpetual" — the first reliable self-winding movement for wristwatches launched in 1933. They would form the foundation for Rolex's Datejust and Day-Date, respectively introduced in 1945 and 1956, but also importantly for their sports watches, such as the Explorer, Submariner and GMT-Master launched in the mid-1950s.

    One of its most famous models is the Cosmograph Daytona. Launched in 1963, these chronographs are without any doubt amongst the most iconic and coveted of all collectible wristwatches. Other key collectible models include their most complicated vintage watches, including references 8171 and 6062 with triple calendar and moon phase, "Jean Claude Killy" triple date chronograph models and the Submariner, including early "big-crown" models and military-issued variants.

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Ref. 16700
A fine and rare limited edition stainless steel dual-time wristwatch with date, bracelet, “Chuck Yeager” dial, guarantee and presentation box, numbered 18 of a limited edition of 50 pieces

Circa 1997
40mm Diamter
Case, dial, movement, clasp signed and case back stamped No. 18/50

HK$160,000 - 240,000 

Sold for HK$350,000

Contact Specialist

Thomas Perazzi
Head of Watches, Asia
+852 2318 2001

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: NINE

Hong Kong Auction 25-26 November 2019