Circa: 1971
Movement: Manual, cal. 727, 17 jewels
Dial: Cream, “tropical” brown subsidiary dialsand outer track
Case: Stainless steel, screw back, inside case back stamped 6239, 37.5 mm diam.
Bracelet/Clasp: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet, stamped 1 71, endlinks stamped 271, overall approximate length of bracelet 7.25 inches
Accompanied by: A Rolex service bezel, a Rolex service bracelet stamped 78350 and 571 to the endlinks

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Lot Essay

Consigned by the original owner, the present ‘Paul Newman Panda’ reference 6263 is the model that collectors crave and provides connoisseurs with the opportunity to acquire what is unquestionably one of the most sought-after of all vintage Rolex sports watches.

With a monochromatic black and white palette, the ‘Panda’ Paul Newman dial is simply superb, considered by many to be one of the most attractive dial variations to be found on a vintage Daytona - it is certainly one of the rarest and most recognizable. The present watch has aged naturally, being in the possession of the same owner since receiving it for his birthday during his youth. A gift received from his father, the timepiece was purchased at the O.J. Perrin shop, situated on the prestigious 33 avenue Victor Hugo in Paris, and stayed on the owners wrist ever since.

Upon a first analysis, the beauty of the timepiece can easily be perceived. The white background of the dial has remained fresh, furthermore, it is offered with unmistakable characteristics. The subdials are considered "Big Eyes" as they are wider than on MK2 Paul Newman "Panda" chronographs, almost touching the outertrack of the of the dial. Throughout the years, the colour of the three subsidiary dials as well as parts of the outer track have aged to a very attractive deep brown hue. Such attractive details elevate the collectability of the wristwatch, making it standout form its counterparts.

The change in colour of the subsidiary dials throughout the years from black to deep brown is understood to be caused by the reaction of the dial paint to external elements such as humidity or exposure to light. In this instant, this attractive change in colour could be the result of the adventurous lifestyle of the owner. In 1977, he was sent to Burma in order to oversee the filming of a documentary on the Karen minority, at the time at war against the Burmese government since 1948. Highly attached to his chronograph, the Rolex 6263 accompanied him throughout his expedition.

A similar example is illustrated and described in: Rolex Daytona dalla nascita al mito, un viaggio tra tecnica e stile, Carlo Pregola, Stefano Mazzariol and Giovanni Dosso, pp. 194. For another ref. 6263 with ‘Paul Newman Panda’ dial see: Ultimate Rolex Daytona, Pucci Papaleo, pp. 348 to 351.

Reference 6263
Sporting a black bezel and screw down pushers, it inherits the legacy of reference 6240, the first of the screw down pusher Daytonas, also featuring a black bezel. The similarity is obvious, the differences much less so. As a matter of fact, however, the case design of reference 6263 is slightly bigger, the movement is the new caliber 727, whilst reference 6240 is usually fitted with the older caliber 722 (even though early examples are known with the earlier 72B caliber, and late ones with cal. 722-1). The defining feature of both references is undeniably the presence of the screw down pushers, which make the entire watch look bigger, more sporting and masculine.

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