erald Charles begins 2022 with the GC Sport, an elegant, high-performance sports watch based on the inimitable Maestro, the iconic wristwatch designed by the great Gérald Charles Genta.
The GC Sport combines lightweight, robust architecture with traditional fine watchmaking techniques, honouring Gérald Charles Genta’s legacy of ‘artistic creativity, technical mastery’. The watch has been designed for every moment in life and tested and approved by some of the world’s most successful professional athletes.
During 2021, Gerald Charles designers and engineers worked with a trio of ATP Tour® tennis players, friends of the Maison, to create the ultimate elegant sports watch. The idea was to create a fine wristwatch that could be worn on both the field of play and at a gala dinner. After months of testing on tennis courts around the world, the Maison delivered a beautiful, highly technical watch with a number of modifications compared to the Gerald Charles Maestro 2.0 Ultra-Thin.
The first is in the watch’s 39mm case, which here is cast in polished Grade 5 titanium, a material that’s as hard as steel, but 40 per cent lighter. The polished finish was chosen for its elegant, classic feel. Next, the watch’s screw-down crown has moved from the right to the left side of the case to prevent rubbing during play, following feedback from the players.
The Gerald Charles GCA3002 automatic manufacture movement has also been specially adapted in collaboration with the Maison’s partner Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier. It has been made stronger and up to 40 per cent more resistant to shocks and stresses caused by high-impact movements.
The rotor has been evolved, too. It is now more resistant, so that it doesn’t wind the movement too quickly during intense physical exercise, or risk overwinding it. Through bespoke testing, a series of fine adjustments were also made to the movement’s architecture. By varying the tolerances in the screws, for example, watchmakers were able to make the movement more shock-resistant, without affecting its accuracy or long-term performance. The changes are similar to the adjustments an engineer would make to a car’s suspension to cater for differences in terrain.
This additional shock-resistance has been achieved without adding a shock absorber and while retaining the movement’s ultra-thin, 3.7mm profile. The movement was also adapted to accommodate the 180-degree revolution required to set the crown on the left side of the case. The most significant change was to the date wheel, which required a bespoke solution to ensure it would align to the new layout.
In keeping with the Maison’s fine watchmaking traditions, the movement is classically decorated with Côtes de Genève and visible through a sapphire case back. The watch is just 8mm thick and as with every piece in the contemporary Gerald Charles collection, it’s water-resistant to 100 metres.
The GC Sport has a striking, playful royal blue dial with applied Arabic numerals at 3, 9 and 12, which were chosen to capture the watch’s sportier character. Gerald Charles artisans applied several layers of colour to the dial so that it would reflect different colours depending on the light conditions. In warm light it looks violet; in cold light, ice blue; in full sunlight, light blue; and as darkness falls, almost black.
The dial and case are complemented by a royal blue vulcanised rubber strap, decorated with the Maison’s signature Clous de Paris motif. The strap has a Grade 5 titanium ‘smile-shaped’ pin buckle decorated with the Gerald Charles logo and finished with a stepped motif, subtly mirroring the design of the watch’s case.
The players commented that the watch was extremely comfortable to wear on court thanks to its ergonomic case design, hypoallergenic rubber strap and robust, lightweight construction. The whole watch weighs just 50 grams.
“Every Gerald Charles watch has to be sporty elegant and the GC Sport is a powerful expression of these values,” said Gerald Charles General Manager Federico Ziviani. “It’s been approved by professional tennis players, but unlike many sports watches found elsewhere on the market, it is still ultra-thin, elegant and a watch you can just as easily wear at a formal occasion as on court. This marriage of versatility and performance is what makes Gerald Charles and the GC Sport so unique.”
Case Grade 5 titanium with polished finish, 39mm x 41mm x 8mm, left-hand screw-down Grade 5 titanium crown with Clous de Paris finish and embossed logo, anti-glare sapphire crystal, brushed Grade 5 titanium case back with anti-glare sapphire crystal, water resistant to 100m.
Dial Royal blue sunburst, numerals, hour and minute hands and indexes filled with Super LumiNova®.
Movement Ultra-thin automatic ref. GCA3002, developed with Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier, 3.7mm thickness, 189 components, 28 rubies, 28,800vph, (4hz), 50-hour power reserve from twin barrels, anti-shock system, Incabloc® stop-second system, bi-directional rotating rotor with ceramic ball bearing, hours, minutes and central seconds, date at 6 o’clock, circular-grained and Côtes de Genève decoration.
Strap Royal blue vulcanised rubber, Clous de Paris finish to top side, Gerald Charles logo tapisserie to rear, Grade 5 titanium buckle with Gerald Charles logo.
Total weight 50 grams.