As a partner to the Artemis Racing team in the America’s Cup, Ulysse Nardin is flying the team’s colors high with the new FreakWing, which is packed with innovations and cutting-edge technology just like the famous high-tech AC45 catamaran of the Swedish challenger.
The jewel of the sea has finally been encapsulated in the form of a watch! To celebrate its partnership with the Artemis Racing team for the 35th America’s Cup, Ulysse Nardin has adorned its new FreakWing with the most emblematic features of this high-tech catamaran: the upper bridge for the minutes is inspired by the internal structure of the rigid sail, while the texture of the rotating hours disc evokes the mesh net of the multihull. The bezel and case back are forged from carbon fiber, an element that is omnipresent in high-level sailing. And so, flying the colors of the Swedish challenger, the FreakWing is a hymn to excellence, to innovation, to technology and to precision – values which are shared by both brands.
The Artemis Racing AC45 catamaran, the challenger of the Swedish Royal Yacht Club – the 5th oldest sailing club in the world – is designed like no other: its rigid sail in the shape of an aeroplane wing and foils allow it to achieve phenomenal performances; reaching up to 45 knots – more than 80 km/h. Ulysse Nardin’s Freak collection follows the same philosophy. For fifteen years, it has produced the most audacious innovations and the most daring architecture. This watch was the first to integrate a silicium escapement in 2001, a diamond version in 2005 and the Dual Ulysse escapement in the same year. Without a dial or hands, it is made in such a manner as to pivot its movement on itself. Linked to the center of this unusual vessel, the lower bridge indicates the time while the upper bridge–which carries the gear train, the paired balance spring and the escapement in silicium, exclusive to the Dual Ulysse escapement– displays the minutes.
As spectacular as always with its Tourbillon in the center, riding high with the Artemis Racing logo on the back, the new FreakWing offers a highly readable hour and minute display, as well as the date at four o’clock. On the technology side, it features the UlyChoc safety system, a new generation of shock absorbers. Entirely conceived, developed and produced in-house, it replaces three traditional micro-elements with just one made from silicium. This is a true world first and is the subject of a patent application. This solution avoids any slack or friction, allowing for perfect re-centering of the balance wheel in the event of an impact.
Sturdier than ever, with a black DLC titanium case and a carbon-style strap with yellow stitching, the FreakWing is also phenomenal to use. In the absence of a crown, it is the upper and lower bezels, integrated into the movement, which perform the various functions: the first, secured by a safety clip between the lugs at 6 o’clock, can be used to set the hours and minutes when rotated clockwise, and to set the date when rotated anti-clockwise; the second, on the case back, is to wind the mainspring barrel – designed for a power reserve of eight days.
The America’s Cup, which is the oldest international sporting competition (1851), even before the first modern Olympic Games (1896), will take place in June 2017. Until then, like two master mariners, each having mastered the ropes of their respective disciplines, Artemis Racing and Ulysse Nardin can count on each other giving the very best of themselves.