Every year, we get something like closure by racking our brains over, what else, the Revolution Awards. To grease our ruminations, this year we have also created a few categories to be decided by the public. Join us as we unveil an Award Winner every day, counting down to the New Year.
Public Polling: Best Design
Blancpain Air Command
Our first encounter with the 2019 Air Command was at the Blancpain Le Brassus manufacture, in the hands of the man at the helm, Mr Marc Hayek. In that moment in time, it did not matter that this is a recreation of a past rarity, it did not matter that Blancpain had made a vintage styled watch in a time when faux-tina has become a taboo word. What did matter, is that Blancpain had just showed us one of the best looking watches to have been introduced in 2019.
The origin of the Air Command lies in the success of the Fifty Fathoms as a dive watch with the American Navy. Following which, in the late 1950s, Blancpain sought to provide a timepiece suitable for the Air Force.
The watch that was therefore created took all of its DNA from the Fifty Fathoms and had the added advantage of a flyback chronograph. This experimental watch was provided to the Air Force pilots through Blancpain’s distributor in the US, Allen V. Tornek but it was never quite adopted for use. Further down a year or so, a version of the watch with a slightly different dial was offered to the Columbian army and here, only around a dozen were produced.
The 2019 reissue is 42.5mm in steel with a steel bi-directional bezel fitted with a ceramic insert. Numerals and markers on the bezel are filled with Super-LumiNova, as are the Arabic numeral hour markers as well as the hour, minute and the tip of the chrono seconds hand.
While the watch was never picked up by the Air Force back then, Blancpain’s Air Command re-edition was clearly a hit with Revolution’s polled audience as well as watch collectors who bought it out instantly, who have voted to crown the watch this year’s Best Design.