Longines Returns as Official Timekeeper for Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks



It’s looking like I’ll have to rearrange my weekend plans, and not just to make sure I’m in front of a TV in time for the horses to post for the Kentucky Derby this Saturday, May 4. Thanks to a communiqué from Swiss watchmaker Longines, which will clock all the official race times at Churchill Downs, I now have to clear my schedule for most of Friday, in order to watch live coverage of the Kentucky Oaks race.

The annual event is kind of like the Derby’s little sister. Like a silver tray piled high with raspberry and rose-scented macarons, it has a compelling  fashion component, complete with a pink carpet and a Longines Prize for Elegance awarded to the best-dressed lady and gentleman to walk its length. You can catch all the action on May 3, 12–6:30 p.m., on the NBCSports network.

Longines Kentucky Oaks watch
The official watch of Kentucky Oaks is a model from the Longines Master collection (ref. L2.257.4.97.6).

Longines has chosen a model from its Master collection to be this year’s Kentucky Oaks timepiece. With its blue dial, glittering diamond indexes, and polished stainless-steel bracelet, it blends elegance and versatility, an accessory that can take you from the racetrack to any occasion, while balancing the frilliest of tea dresses and wide-brimmed hats.

As for Longines 2019 Kentucky Derby watch, it’s a striking sport chronograph model from the Conquest V.H.P. (“Very High Precision”) collection. Displaying a blue dial, a stainless-steel case, and a rubber strap, it houses an ultraprecise movement (+/-5 seconds/year), chronograph functionality, and a perpetual calendar.

Longines Kentucky Derby watch
The official watch of the Kentucky Derby: the Conquest V.H.P. chronograph (ref. L3.717.4.96.9)

The watch’s sports-luxe vibe will expertly complement the blue blazer/striped shirt/khakis uniform (and the occasional seersucker suit) that the most high-profile Derby folk seem to favor. (Longines traditionally presents timepieces to the winning jockeys, owners, and race teams.)

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to revise my grocery list to include bourbon and mint.

Top: For Kentucky Oaks, traditionally held the day before the Kentucky Derby, attendees are encouraged to think pink when planning their ensembles—in honor of the Oaks’ official flower, the stargazer lily, and in support of Churchill Downs’ official partnership with breast cancer charity Horses and Hope. A much-looked-forward-to aspect of this event is the Longines Kentucky Oaks Fashion Contest, which involves a parade of flower- and ribbon-festooned hats on a pink carpet and the awarding of a Longines timepiece to the day’s most elegantly dressed man and woman (image from the 2018 Kentucky Oaks pink carpet festivities via: kentuckyderby.com.).

 

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All That Glitters writer