Wimbledon marks the start of the British summer, not just for tennis fans with a penchant for champagne and strawberries, but also for Rolex, its customers and authorized dealers who descend on the tournament for a taste of the watchmaker’s legendary hospitality.
Rolex has been the official timekeeper for the Grand Slam tournament for almost half a century, and also lists many of the sport’s biggest stars among its testimonees.
This year, three Rolex brand ambassadors have made it deep into the second week, with two players in the men’s quarter finals, including 39-year-old Roger Federer, who earns $9 million per year from Rolex, and two ladies in the semi finals.
Celebrating the link between Rolex and Wimbledon is California-based pre-owned specialist Bob’s Watches, which enjoys speculating on which Rolex watches should be favored by the remaining testimonees.
The Swiss megastar has kept things classic this year by clipping into a Rolex Datejust for the cameras after every victory.
Rolex first partnered with Federer back in 2006 in what was one of the largest single endorsements for any professional athlete at the time, a $15 million dollar 10-year contract.
A 10-year contract is rare for sports stars even now, especially when you consider how a players career can fluctuate or even fall apart due to injury.
Despite his advancing age, that deal was renewed at a slightly more modest $9 million per year in 2017, and he is now expected to continue as a lifelong ambassador, even when his playing career ends.
Roger Federer’s favorite Rolex watch and the one that is most associated with him is the 41mm Rolex Datejust II ref. 116334 fitted with a distinct rhodium-colored dial featuring blue Arabic numerals.
In 2011 Kerber made it to the semi-final of the US Open but was defeated by Samantha Stosur.
After 15 years, she was the first German to reach the semi-finals of a Grand Slam.
With some of the winnings she bought her first Rolex.
Not just any random Rolex however! Angelique had chosen the Rolex Datejust 36 (Ref. 116234). After her hard fought effort she thought it was appropriate to reward herself.
In 2019, Russian Karen Khachanov, 23, signed a partnership with Rolex and he has only gotten better!
He is currently ranked #29 in the world and finds himself in the quarter finals of Wimbledon 2021.
His choice of Rolex is the GMT Master II “Rootbeer”.
Designed to show the time in two different time zones simultaneously, the GMT-Master, launched in 1955, was originally developed as a navigation instrument for professionals crisscrossing the globe.