NASA's Apollo program likely represents the most ambitious, audacious, and downright impressive adventure of all time, and for those of us in the watch enthusiast community, you can't read "Apollo" without thinking of the Omega Speedmaster. Becoming the NASA flight-certified watch for the Apollo program has made an icon of what started out in 1957 as Omega's motorsports chronograph, and there's no other watch that carries the nickname "The Moonwatch." With Apollo 11 celebrating its 50th anniversary and vintage Speedmasters becoming more and more valuable to collectors, Sotheby's has announced an upcoming Speedmaster-themed sale on July 19th in New York City.*
Dubbed "Omega Speedmaster: To The Moon And Back," this auction will feature only Speedmaster examples that have been approved and authenticated as genuine by Omega, including not one but two reference 2915-1 watches (the original Speedmaster; one is shown above, the other in the top image) and an Alaska III Speedmaster that was made for the Space Shuttle program for NASA in 1978 (shown below, estimate $70,000 to $90,000).*2915-1 Speedmasters have proven to be very valuable at auction; one example became the most expensive Speedmaster ever sold at auction when a lovely 2915-1 claimed $408,500 at a Phillips auction in May of 2018.*
The public exhibition of the lots will open July 15th alongside Sotheby's Space Exploration Sale (which sounds rather cool all on its own). With both of the 2915-1s commanding impressive pre-auction estimates ($100,000 to $200,000 for the example on a strap and $150,000 to $250,000 for the one on a bracelet) it's hard to predict where these will land once bidding actually starts. If you're in the city between the 15th and the 19th of July, I'm sure it's worth swinging through the preview to see the offerings for yourself.*
For more information visit Sotheby's online.