Yellow Time Machines: F.P. Journe’s New Centigraphe Sport and Octa Sport

While it is known widely for its elegant, high-horology timepieces, F.P. Journe has been making its presence felt, in its own distinctive style, in the luxury sports-watch arena for the better part of a decade now, and the latest models in its simply-named lineSport collection feature perhaps the watchmaker’s most boldly sport-oriented dials to date. Here’s a closer look at the new 2018 versions of the Centigraphe Sport and Octa Sport, outfitted with eye-catching yellow dials.

F.P. Journe Centigraphe Sport 2018 - front
The F.P. Journe Centigraphe Sport 2018 can measure elapsed times to 1/100th second.

Both timepieces use grade 5 titanium with a matte anthracite finish for their 44-mm-diameter cases and bracelets, and a titanium base with a black ceramic coating for their bezels. The bezel’s numerals are engraved directly into the titanium base in the manner of a previous F.P. Journe model, launched at SIHH 2018, the Chronographe Monopoussoir Rattrapante. The use of titanium, a metal frequently used in boating and aeronautics for its prized combination of low density, toughness, and corrosion resistance, helps F.P. Journe keep the weight of the watches down to a relatively light 75 grams. Another factor in the watches’ lightness is the use of aluminum alloy for the movements, a performance-driven substitute for the solid gold used in the movements of F.P.Journe’s more luxury-oriented watches. (The first generation of Journe’s lineSport watches, in fact, made horology history as the first timepieces to use aluminum for essentially the entirety of the watch: case, movement, and bracelet.)

F.P. Journe Centigraphe Sport 2018 - back
F.P. Journe Caliber 1506 is dominated by aluminum parts.

The new Centigraphe, like its predecessors, has an ergonomic design with a rocker at 2 o’clock, rather than the usual double pushers, to start, stop, and zero the chronograph function. A patented innovation in the movement’s chronograph mechanism isolates the stopwatch from the timekeeping — a separate chronograph train is driven directly by the mainspring in a patented design — so the balance amplitude is unaffected while the former is running. The three subdials on the yellow, lacquered aluminum dial display elapsed times of 20 seconds at 3 o’clock, 10 minutes at 6 o’clock, and 1 second (divided into 1/100th increments) at 10 o’clock; the latter’s hand makes one revolution around its dial per second and can be stopped anywhere along its trajectory. The movement in the Centigraphe is F.P. Journe’s groundbreaking, manually wound Caliber 1506, which is visible through a sapphire caseback and holds a power reserve of 80 hours with the chronograph stopped, 24 hours with it running.

F.P. Journe Octa Sport 2018 - front
The F.P. Journe Octa Sport 2018 has among its several indications an enlarged date window.

The Octa Sport features a different set of useful functions and is equipped with a self-winding movement. In addition to the central hours and minutes, indicated by Journe’s signature triangular hands, the watch has a small seconds readout on a subdial at 6 o’clock (like the subdials of the Centigraphe, made of sapphire and accented by red numerals); a day-night indicator at 9 o’clock; a display of the watch’s impressive 160-plus-hour power reserve at 10;30; and a date display at 1:00, which has been enlarged from its previous iterations to a very legible 4.7 x 2.6 mm.

F.P. Journe Octa Sport - back
The winding rotor of Caliber FPJ J 1300-3 features a titanium body and a tungsten weight.

The automatic movement inside, Caliber FPJ J 1300-3, is wound in one direction by an off-centered, titanium rotor equipped with a tungsten weight. Like all movements from the mind and atelier of brand founder and namesake Francois-Paul Journe, it boasts haute horlogerie decoration throughout, including circular côtes de Genève on the bridges, circular graining on the baseplate, and polishing and chamfering on the screws, slots, and steel components. Prices for the new models are 60,000 euros for the Centigraphe Sport and 38,600 euros for the Octa Sport.

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