• Rolex Daytona "Lesson One" 50  auction at Christies

    Sale 4002

    Rolex Daytona "Lesson One" 50 exceptional examples of the world's most celebrated chronograph wristwatch

    10 November 2013, Geneva

  • Lot 23

    Rolex. An extremely rare and important stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with bracelet, original guarantee and box

    SIGNED ROLEX, COSMOGRAPH, OYSTER, DAYTONA, REF. 6263/6239, PAUL NEWMAN MODEL, CASE NO. 2'197'870, MANUFACTURED IN 1969

    Price Realised  

    Rolex. An extremely rare and important stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with bracelet, original guarantee and box
    Signed Rolex, Cosmograph, Oyster, Daytona, ref. 6263/6239, Paul Newman model, case no. 2'197'870, manufactured in 1969
    Cal. 727 mechanical movement, 17 jewels, black dial, applied square numerals with luminous accents, luminous hands, outer red fifths of a second divisions on white chapter ring, three engine-turned subsidiary dials for constant seconds, 30 minutes and 12 hours registers, tonneau-shaped water-resistant-type case, black bezel calibrated for 200 units, screw back, screw down crown, two round screw down chronograph buttons in the band, stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet, case, dial and movement signed
    37.5 mm. diam.


    Contact Client Service
    • info@christies.com

    • New York +1 212 636 2000

    • London +44 (0)20 7839 9060

    • Hong Kong +852 2760 1766

    • Shanghai +86 21 6355 1766

    Contact the department

    With Rolex Guarantee dated 22 July 1978 and Rolex box.

    The definitive introduction of the screw down pushers gives Rolex a great advantage over its competitors. This feature allows the watch to be submerged even though the chronographic functions are disabled because of the screwed-down position of the pushers. This attracts buyers who flock to buy the Rolex Chronographs worldwide, thus, eventually ensuring the success of this model.

    With regards to the collection history of Daytona, the moment of "breakthrough" does not arrive until 1988, with the introduction of automatic movements and a rediscovery of manual Daytonas. Due to the slow supply from Zenith, the manufacturer of the El Primero caliber, and an underestimation of market demand, retailers find themselves with lines of clients waiting for the delivery of their new watch.

    The old-fashioned manually wound timepieces began their journey towards collectors heaven. They are soon considered irrefutable treasures to the collectors' community. The Paul Newman is a prime example and by the end of the 1980s becomes one of the most interesting case studies of the vintage watch market.

    Among the various versions of the Paul Newman Daytona, the model sporting a black background and screw-down pushers becomes the most prestigious and sought-after by collectors all over the world. A rough estimate indicates that a little more than a dozen appeared on the market, including both public and private sales, and they all became crowning jewels of the most important international Daytona collections.

    Technically manufactured in a similar way to the latest versions of push-down buttons Daytonas, however the difference lies in the presence of the "Oyster" designation, typical of its reference 6263. On normal dials, "Oyster" is located always between "Rolex" and "Cosmograph". This holds true also for the white Paul Newman dial. However, on this model the dial reads "Rolex Cosmograph Oyster" instead of the normal "Rolex Oyster Cosmograph".

    Another noteworthy feature is the different font used for the Rolex designation on this dial. Compared to all other Paul Newman dials, except for a few rare dials made for ref. 6262 and 6264, the R is bigger and the serifs more accentuated. Beyond its graphical appeal, this feature enhances the value and desirability of the present timepiece.

    The few black Paul Newman 6263s offered so far all bear very low serial numbers. This is also the case for this magnificent watch. This indicates how the design could have been restricted to a selected few, some of which were early 6263s models.

    Consequently, this watch reflect characteristics typical of the first series production. For example, the main case body and bezel are derived from previous models, the case back is internally stamped 6239, the caliber is 727, and the screw-down pushers are millerighe.

    This masterpiece is offered with its box and guarantee. The style of the guarantee is that of the late 1970s. The watch remained dormant in the Swiss retailer's vault for years, before being sold in 1978 at which time the design of the guarantee papers supplied by Rolex had changed.