After 12 years and 22 editions away from the Olympic Games, the prestigious Swiss brand Omega is once again the official timekeeper for the Games. At a ceremony held at the Olympic Museum, IOC President Jacques Rogge was presented with a reproduction of the original Omega chronographs used for timekeeping in all the competitions of the 1932 Olympic Games in Los Angeles. This handsome gift will become part of the Museum’s collections.
A long friendship
Nick Hayek, the Swatch Group CEO, recalled the long-standing links between Swatch Group and the IOC: “We have shown our commitment to sport through our close relations with the IOC since 1932. The Omega 1932 watch is a reminder of both this historic relationship and the essential role of sports timekeeping at the Olympic Games.”
An unusual discovery behind the project
Omega President Stephen Urquhart then explained the fascinating story behind this contemporary edition of the famous Omega 1932 chronograph: the discovery by chance of sketches and unassembled movement parts kept safely ever since that time in the Omega archives. “The 1932 watch shows the past and present commitment of Omega to the art and science of sports timekeeping”, he said.
The partnership between the IOC and Omega to provide precise and reliable timekeeping equipment began in 1932, and continued for many years. Between 1991 and 2004, it was Swatch which took over. But at the Olympic Winter Games in Turin next February, the world’s best athletes will once again be looking to Omega to learn their results. Omega will also be representing the Swatch Group at the 2008 Games in Beijing, and in Vancouver in 2010.