Editor’s Note: Picture 10 pristine new Rolex boxes stacked neatly in your cupboard or, more likely, your safe. For me, this is immediately challenging because this would mean a bigger safe. What would be a dream for many of us is a reality for one man, Mark Richards. We published his watch story as part of a bigger feature video about his life. You can watch that here.
Mark is the most successful skipper in the gruelling Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race’s 71-year history, and his mighty waterborne steed, current race record holder Wild Oats XI, is the most successful yacht. But when we met, we didn’t just discuss tacking manoeuvres and strategy, we also talked about his watch, the Rolex Yacht-Master (ref 16622). The one he hasn’t taken off since he won it in 2005. The very same watch he won when Wild Oats XI took its first line honours in a Rolex Sydney Hobart yacht race. It proved to be the start of a decade-long winning streak that continues today.
Before you hit play, let me quickly tell a behind-the-scenes story. Part of the shoot included us filming Mark’s watch on its own. This happened at the end of the day, when we’d all but wrapped. I shook hands with Mark – his is a firm grasp, let me tell you – and said goodbye. He maintained my grasp, “I’ll be seeing you again mate,” he said. “You’ve got my good luck charm there.”