A day at TAG Heuer headquarters with the drivers of the Porsche TAG Heuer Formula E Team.
While during the season the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team works hard to beat time, in this instance the two factory drivers, Pascal Wehrlein and António Félix da Costa got to learn about the craft of time itself, at the TAG Heuer HQ in La Chaux de Fonds, Switzerland. Where time is measured like nowhere else.
The visit started with a cosy dinner together with the TAG Heuer team. Punctually as possibly only a group of race drivers and watch makers can be, they met at 8 PM sharp and enjoyed the local fare at a typical restaurant.
Next up was a welcome coffee in the head quarter’s salle du grand conseil the following morning accompanied by a short presentation that gave the drivers an intro into the wonders of timekeeping they were to experience that day, and a look into the future of TAG Heuer.
What we experienced today was not just an interesting look behind the scenes, but a deep insight into the work of TAG Heuer. I’m now an even bigger admirer than I already was.
Later Pascal and António were greeted by TAG Heuer’s heritage manager, who gave them a tour of the brand’s watchmaker museum. As they say, opposites attract, so it’s no wonder that Pascal, a man all about shaving off milliseconds, instantly fell in love with a watch on display more than a hundred years old. A love that was fostered even more, learning about TAG Heuer’s evolution and deep connection to Motorsport.
Soon thereafter the drivers were gifted their own watchmaking coats personalised with their names and visited the testing lab and the assembly workshop. They experienced first-hand how about 40 watchmakers piece together the masterpieces that are TAG Heuer watches, and got to find out why they can truly be considered so. The drivers then needed to craft their own watches, mounting the hands on the faces. After some time, António gave up but Pascal, with steady hands was able to mount all three of them. In the second room of the testing lab, the drivers witnessed the extensive tests each finished watch undergoes before it leaves the factory.
Next up was a watchmaking masterclass under the careful eye of one experienced watchmaking trainer for each of our drivers turned apprentices. With utmost care, precision and concentration they go to work on the tourbillon of a watch and in the end proved that even off the racetrack they are like clockwork – after both had assembled their pieces, Pascal helped António fix the last screw.
As in tradition at the company, now that the drivers had successfully completed their training they were invited to sign their names on the training rooms glass wall. An honour both gladly accepted.
Next up was a short interview with Roadbook Magazine and then the drivers were welcomed by TAG Heuer’s CMO George Ciz, who was joined by about 50 other TAG Heuer employees. What followed was a delightful conversation about Formula E, racing strategy, the car and even a few personal questions about the drivers. It is without a doubt that watchmakers and racing enthusiasts share an excitement for precision technology. As a sign of appreciation for their continuous support Pascal handed over his Diriyah driver trophy to George Ciz representing the team’s namesake and sponsor.
Porsche and TAG Heuer are fascinating brands in their own right that stand for cutting-edge engineering and reliability. But together they create a unique and magical synergy.
Lastly the drivers were shown the TAG Heuer Carrera collection, the newly launched TAG Heuer Porsche Chronograph edition and the Monaco collection. They also where guests on an episode of TAG Heuer’s “The edge” podcast.