It’s time to rediscover this forgotten Omega Speedmaster

In the 1990s, when Michael Schumacher was fast on his way to becoming the most successful Formula 1 driver of all time, Omega introduced several special edition ‘Schumacher’ Speedmasters, two of which are poised to be sold by Phillips in Hong Kong on 27 November with very reasonable estimates…

Before NASA ever sent the Speedmaster on its course to the moon, Omega had pitched the chronograph specifically at racing drivers or, at least, wannabe racing drivers. And despite NASA facilitating what was perhaps the greatest unique selling point in the history of marketing, Omega never lost sight of the watch’s roots. 

Fast forward to the mid-1990s and the Swiss watchmaker had employed Michael Schumacher as an ambassador. The German racer had already scored two World Driver’s Championship victories with Benetton and moved to Ferrari ahead of the 1996 season. Omega promptly introduced a series of special edition Speedmaster Reduced models. Available in yellow, red, and blue, the watches were essentially identical to the regular Speedmaster Reduced, but with a different dial, strap, and set of hands. And though there was no explicit reference to Schumacher on the watches themselves, the ultra-cool presentation box, which mimicked two Formula 1 car’s tyres, bore the great driver’s signature. 

Okay, so they were not limited in number and featured off-the-shelf ETA automatic movements, but today, these bold yet slinky Speedmasters are very wearable, available for well below 2,000 euros, and provide a timely reminder of arguably the greatest racing driver of all time. You’re always in our thoughts, Michael… 

Photos: Phillips, Getty Images 

At its Hong Kong Watch Auction: Seven, Phillips will offer both a yellow and a red example of the Omega Speedmaster Reduced ‘Michael Schumacher’, both with attached pre-sale estimates of 880–1,800 euros. You can browse the entire catalogue for the sale, which takes place 27 November in Hong Kong, in the Classic Driver Market