In light of the new Speedmaster Super Racing Omega released today (January 26, 2023), now might be a good time to discuss the watch the new Speedy pays tribute to: The Omega Aqua Terra >15’000 GAUSS “Bumblebee”.
This piece was introduced 10 years ago at Baselworld 2013. That is why the new Speedmaster Super Racing features a unique datewheel with yellow text on a black background, with a special font for the number 10. Omega calls it a Tribute 10 date, in honor of the Bumblebee.
The original model was available on a bracelet or a brown leather strap. This particular piece was acquired on the brown leather strap which I didn’t find appealing with the sporty black and yellow dial, so I immediately swapped it for a plain Jane black military strap. This achieved the desired effect of making the yellow accents really “pop”. Regardless of your strap preference, the Aqua Terra silhouette really makes for a versatile piece that can handle different looks, from the golf course to the lab – it’s an engineer’s watch after all.
The movement within is an Omega caliber 8508. It is an in-house movement that was early enough to fully embrace the industry’s race to label everything as such. As with the text on the dial, this calibre’s claim to fame is it’s anti-magnetic properties. You can read all about it at Caliber Corner, but the gist of it is that it was the result of Swatch Group CEO G. N. Hayek’s request for the brand to design a completely non-magnetic watch – at least that’s how the story goes.
Up until this point, the Rolex Milgauss was the scientist’s watch, capable of withstanding up to 1,000 gauss. The Aqua Terra “Gauss” as some enthusiasts call it, kicked it up about 15 notches. It’s like their land-dweller answer to the ridiculous depths the Deepsea was created to endure.
The sleek black teak dial with subtle but unconventional bumblebee seconds hand makes this a powerful and versatile watch in your arsenal.
- Reference: 22.214.171.124.01.001
- Movement: Automatic / Swiss made / Co-Axial / COSC
- Caliber: Omega 8508
- Case Material: Stainless steel
- Case Diameter: 41.5mm
- Case Thickness: 13mm
- Lug to Lug: 48mm
- Weight: 83 grams / 2.9 ounces
- Dial: Black with yellow accents
- Lume: Super-LumiNova
- Band: Black NATO strap with matching steel hardware
- Crystal: Sapphire / AR coating
- Water-Resistance: 150m / 500ft
- Screw-down crown
- Retail Price: $6,500 USD