Paul Newman’s Rolex Daytona to beat $1m?

Paul Newman’s own Rolex “Paul Newman” Cosmograph Daytona watch looks set to make more than $1m this coming October.

Phillips is featuring it in its Winning Icons sale in New York on October 27.

Paul Newman Daytona

Paul Newman gave this watch to his daughter's boyfriend in the mid 1980s

Newman gave the watch to his daughter Nell’s boyfriend, James Cox, during the mid-1980s.

Cox was spending the summer with the family in Westport, Connecticut and had decided to renovate their tree house, which stood in an oak tree by on the banks of the Aspetuck River.

Nell Newman writes in a letter of provenance accompanying the watch: “Pop would frequent the river bank to check on James’ progress.

“During one such encounter, Pop asked James if he knew the time.

“Apparently Pop forgot to wind his wristwatch that morning.

“James responded that he didn’t know the time and didn’t own a watch. Pop handed James his Rolex and said, ‘if you can remember to wind this each day, it tells pretty good time.’”

Cox treasured the watch for many years after. Whilst he and Nell have long been separated, they have remain good friends and are consigning this watch together.

Proceeds from the sale will go to the Nell Newman Foundation and the Newman’s Own Foundation.

The model is one of Rolex’s most celebrated references, in large part due to its association with Newman. It only became known as the “Paul Newman Daytona” after he was seen wearing one.

The only thing that differentiates it from a regular Daytona is the dial.

It’s rare because it was unpopular on its release (few were manufactured between 1963 and 1970) and only became desirable in the 1980s.

The perfect storm of scarcity and tacit celebrity endorsement has made it one of the most sought after watches on the market.

A Paul Newman Daytona in 18k gold sold for a record $3.7m last month.

This one could easily beat that result.

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