As any ardent watch collector knows, the next best thing to owning rare and precious watches is to look at them. And that’s exactly the opportunity afforded by the latest book in Guido Mondani’s ongoing and in depth exploration of Rolex Watches.
This time the laser sharp focus has switched to the legendary Rolex Daytona. The Rolex Daytona Story represents the most important edition ever done on Rolex: all references of both Manual Winding and Automatic Daytona are presented in the book with highly detailed information and high quality images as big and bright as Paul Newman’s blue eyes.
Rolex introduced the first Cosmograph chronograph in 1963 with the reference 6239 with push down buttons.
In 2012 Rolex has produced the last masterpiece: the references 116598 RBOW in yellow gold and 116599 RBOW in white gold. Rolex Daytona Story covers the whole period from the beginning of the Daytona production until today.
Paul Newman and Rolex Daytona watches
The Daytona story is a fascinating one, and owes much of its success to the allure and charisma of the late Hollywood actor Paul Newman. Of course there are watches out there that are far rarer, far more intricate, and much more expensive, but for cachet and desirability, an original Rolex Cosmograph Daytona, otherwise known as a Paul Newman Daytona, is as highly prized as a watch can be.
Although Rolex continues to manufacture a version of the ‘Daytona’, the rarest versions of the Rolex Daytona are the first versions, those whose reference number contains four digits. For example the 6238, 6239, 6240, 6241, 6262, 6263 6264 and 6265 References, produced from 1961 to 1987. Paul Newman actually wore a stainless steel white faced Daytona on a fatstrap.
The supreme irony is that the Rolex Daytona line was not selling at all well until Paul Newman’s wife, actress Joanne Woodward, gave him the Daytona in 1972 when, at the peak of his fame, he took up motor racing.
Rolex Daytona Story
Written by Osvaldo Patrizzi and Guido Mondani and presented in an impressively large 31 x 41cm 276 page format, the book presents all the Paul Newman models and shows in minute detail the Patrizzi dials, floating dials, personalised dials, Oman dials, vintage advertisements, Daytona Rouge/Noir, Crown Collection and much more. All references are presented with the dates of the beginning and end of production and with the updated price.
The book also comes with what Mondani call a free 24 hour personalised Daytona bag for free. The book costs around $1,270 but advance copies can be ordered for around $365. There’s no mention of print runs, but sales are expected to be brisk.
About Guido Mondani
The books provide first hand advice on how to collect and invest in Rolex, Daytona, Rolex Submariner, GMT-Master, Milgauss, Explorer, Patek Philippe Nautilus, Panerai and many other models of modern and vintage Rolex and Patek Philippe watches.
Paul Newman picture courtesy of Jake’s Rolex World