It’s only been a week since we left Geneva, but there’s still plenty of watches from SIHH 2018 left to chat about. One watch that we’ve been itching to discuss is the F.P. Journe Chronographe Monopoussoir Rattrapante, which represents the latest addition to the brand’s underappreciated LineSport collection.
You may remember F.P. Journe’s contribution to the Only Watch auction back in November, which was constructed from titanium and sold for measly 1.15 million CHF (a record for an F.P. Journe timepiece). That was the inspiration for this new trio of watches with the biggest difference this time around coming from the addition of the big date complication and the fact that, as a part of the LineSport collection, rubber inserts have been added to the case and bracelet in a nod to the bumpers of vintage automobiles.
Containing three different chronographs — one in platinum PT 950, one in 18K rose gold, and one in grade 5 titanium — the models introduce the newly-developed monopoussoir split-second chronograph movement with a big date. The big surprise here is just how large these watches are, which is a bit out of character for François-Paul Journe’s eponymous brand. Measuring in at 44 mm by 12mm, the substantial girth here is in part due to the bevy of new complications added to the mix. The manual-winding caliber 1518 that Journe’s watchmakers developed also features a hearty 80-hour power reserve and direct gearing with a rocking pinion to avoid the jumping of the hand when starting the chronograph function.
Other than the case materials, the watches differ from each other thanks to the colorful dials. For the platinum model, F.P. Journe describes the dial as having a “blue-mauve” color with silver guilloché, applied numerals in white gold, two silver chronograph counters, and matte rhodium-plated hands; for the rose gold model, a silver guilloché dial covered in Ruthenium and red gold applied numerals with two silver chronograph counters and matte 5N gold hands; finally, the titanium model has a dial made from an aluminum alloy in an anthracite color with SuperLuminova-coated applied numerals, two chronograph counters in engraved sapphire, and SuperLuminova-coated hands.
The addition of the big date is classic Journe, and this timepiece is all the better for it. Where the Chronograph Monopoussoir Rattrapante Bleu inverted our expectation of what to look for in an F.P. Journe timepiece, the blend of traditional Journe elements at work in this new version combined with what we loved about the unique piece from Only Watch only continues to cement F.P. Journe’s status as one of the most novel watchmakers at work today.