The present "Paul Newman" ref. 6239 is a particularly appealing and very interesting watch since it features a dial version which is not only very rare but also little known outside the inner circle of scholars.
In fact, the subsidiary dials on this watch are different from those commonly found on the celebrated "Paul Newman" dials which are normally sunk and flat and finished with concentric circles ranging from the centre to the outer border.
The watch here on the other hand is characterized with registers which, in their structure, rather remind the beholder of those found on the standard version of references 6239 and 6241 where the sunken part is not entirely flat but where only 2/3 of the surface is featuring concentric circles and the outer remainder is raised and blank.
Reference 6239, the very first model of the celebrated "Daytona" series, succeeded reference 6238 and could be found in sales catalogues in Europe as of 1964. The model remained in production until the mid-1970s. Available in stainless steel, 14K and 18K gold, reference 6239 was the firm's first chronograph with the tachometre scale engraved on the bezel and the subsidiary dials printed in a different colour than the main dial for better readability. The dials of the first models featured only the designation "Cosmograph", referring to the outer space travels of the early 60s. The "Daytona" was added shortly after to mark Rolex's sponsorship of the renowned Nascar stock car race. The so-called "exotic" or "tropical" dial, later surnamed "Paul Newman", became soon available for reference 6239, either two-coloured white/cream and black or three-coloured, such as the present watch, with the addition of the red seconds scales.
Different versions of reference 6239 in regard to case material and dial layout are furthermore described and illustrated in I Cronografi Rolex - La Leggenda, Pucci Papaleo Editore, pp. 296-303, and in Rolex Daytona - a legend is born by Carlo Pergola, Stefano Mazzariol, Giovanni Dosso, pp. 44 - 74.