From July 9 to 11, Swiss watchmaker Richard Mille proudly sponsored the fifth biannual Le Mans Classic, the vintage race car event that takes place at the celebrated 13 km Le Mans circuit in France. Over the years, Le Mans Classic has become one of the most impressive displays of classic racing automobiles. It pays tribute to the historic 24 Heures du Mans, the oldest endurance sports car race in the world.
This year’s event drew in more than 400 cars, 1,000 drivers, and roughly 100,000 spectators (nearly 20 percent more than 2008). More than 40 former drivers attended, and every car that participated has raced in the 24 Heures du Mans between 1923 and 1979.
This year, Richard Mille himself was the official timekeeper for the event and he even participated by racing his 1970 Lola. Mille has always had a love of racing cars. In fact, his very first watch, the RM 001-1, was modeled with Formula 1 racing cars in mind. As his website explains, “Both are machines pur sang with similar rules regarding their functioning, accuracy of construction, and reliability. Each part of a high performance wristwatch…must fulfill its task with a wide margin of security and resistance to shocks and stress exactly as would be demanded of a high performance racing car.”
In honor of this year’s Le Mans Classic, Richard Mille launched the new limited edition RM 010 Le Mans Classic. The handcrafted green and white wristwatch (the official colors of the race) uniquely features a 24-hour time format at the two o’clock in honor of the 24 Heures du Mans. Just like a racecar, the RM 010 maintains a distinct balance of stunning external elegance and superior internal function. Only 150 of the exclusive watches will be made, available in titanium, white gold, and red gold.