The 'Racing Pulse' auction is a record-breaker

Phillips Auction House closed the year 2020 on a high note, despite the ongoing serious pandemic, with a New York event on 12 December, Racing Pulse, which saw a total takings of more than $27 million, thanks in part to the Rolex 'Big Red' Daytona Ref. 6263 that belonged to Paul Newman and fetched $5,475,000. The auction was conducted by Aurel Bacs live and broadcast worldwide. The Rolex given to the American actor by his wife Joanne Woodward and then passed from him to his daughter Clea, was bought by an anonymous private collector and was the third highest price ever for a Rolex at auction. A record, on the other hand, for the Heuer Monaco Ref. 1133 that belonged to Steve McQueen, worn in the film Le Mans and then donated to his personal mechanic Haig Alltounian. The watch fetched $2,200,000, an absolute record for a Heuer.

"The watch market," said Bacs, "has never been stronger, as evidenced by the enormous enthusiasm we saw at Racing Pulse. Despite the uncertainty of the period, 2020 was the most successful year ever for the auction house with an annual total of over $133 million."

Also among the top ten was a rare Patek Philippe Ref. 3974G, which fetched $1,022,200, and two Richard Mill Ref. RM25-01 which fetched $998,000 and $937,500 respectively. A Panerai Luminor belonging to Sylvester Stallone went for $214,200.

Finally, $2.1 million was raised for the One Drop Foundation and the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation through the Time Counts initiative.