Speedmaster collectors are notoriously as focussed, educated, and enthusiastic as any discipline of watch collector may come. Their scholarship is legendary and nearly unrivaled. Despite that, there are still some ultra-rare references that remain not fully researched. Rather, they are not fully understood. Over time, these darker corners of Speedy collecting are growing fewer and fewer. One of the last remaining mysteries is the ‘Grey Racing’. No one (to date) knows precisely why Omega decided on this dial configuration for a few references in the late 60s or what for. All we know is that its rarity (at an estimated production run of 100-150 pieces across 3 variants) and shroud of mystery is enough to raise the heart rate of even the grizzled Speedy hardcores.
This watch is not territory for Speedmaster amateurs. This is a hardcore collector’s dream. In this period, there are three known variations of racing dial. First, there’s a black dial, red & white markers, applied logo 145.012. Secondly, there’s a black dial, orange & white markers, white logo 145.012-67/8. Last, we have this. The ‘Grey’ dial, orange & white markers, orange logo 145.022-68/9. It’s an exceptionally rare Speedy that usually is only glimpsed at auction. I don’t remember one ever being offered through a small retailer, only Revolution last year. The Davidoff brothers, well known experts in Speedmasters, have estimated around 50 of these Grey Racing dial variants. Others have estimated more. That’s the grey corner of Speedmasters, a limit of our current knowledge. No matter the figure, this is pure dream material for an Omega hardcore.
This example presents well. First, an quite importantly, it comes with an extract of archive confirming the dial. That’s no guarantee, but it’s a very strong start. The bezel is the correct DON, its crown has the correct wide Omega logo, and the dial variant is the correct racing configuration for this reference. The case is very stout, with sharp lines all over. The tritium is matched across its dial and handset (seller notes also under UV). It was previously under stewardship of the original owner’s family, delivered to Switzerland in May 1970. The watch is on offer from a small UK-based retailer, coming to market for the first time.
Find this Grey Racing 145.022-69 available here from @mjgillan by DM on Instagram for 64000 GBP.