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“IWC Chrono Challenge” Pits Lewis Hamilton against Simu Liu in a Basketball Match

The event was held at Jungle Plaza in the heart of the iconic Miami Design District.

May 23, 2023 | By

The 2023 F1 season is well underway, and the Miami Grand Prix will return to the Miami International Autodrome this weekend. Ahead of the race weekend, IWC Schaffhausen invited a group of famous athletes and celebrities to a friendly basketball match at Jungle Plaza in the heart of the iconic Miami Design District. The two teams competed were captained by seven-time F1 Champion Lewis Hamilton on “Team Pink” while Canadian actor and author Simu Liu took on the opposition “Team Green”.

Lewis Hamilton, Brandon Okpalobi, IWC Schaffhausen CEO Christoph Grainger-Herr pose with Dibia DREAM Foundation during The IWC Chrono Challenge. Image: John Parra/Getty Images for IWC

Called the “IWC Chrono Challenge”, the match was organised with Miami-based non-profit organisation Dibia Dream, which is on a mission to spark social change through STEM education and sport for underserved young people in Miami. The boys and girls in the programme also participated as ball girls and boys. A full-sized basketball court was created to host the game, and after the event, it will be donated to Dibia Dream and the City of Miami. In the background is a giant-sized mural of Hamilton wearing the newly announced Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS Formula One team watch featuring a Miami Pink rubber strap.

From left to right: Antrel Rolle, James Marsden and Lewis Hamilton during The IWC Chrono Challenge. Image: Jason Koerner/Getty Images for IWC

Team Pink comprised Hollywood actor James Marsden and former NFL player Antrel Rolle, while Team Green consisted of Olympic skateboarder Jagger Eaton and Dibia Dream founder and CEO Brandon Okpalobi. The two teams faced each other in three basketball skill challenges, which included lay-ups, free throws and one-on-one games. Hosting the game was David Coulthard, a F1 legend, and IWC brand ambassador and Hollywood actress Monica Barbaro was the timekeeper and also kept the scores for the match.

From left to right: Brandon Okpalobi, Simu Liu and Jagger Eaton during The IWC Chrono Challenge. Image: Jason Koerner/Getty Images for IWC

According to IWC, the newly announced timepiece is the first official team watch the brand had made for its partner. IWC and the Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS Formula One Team kicked off their partnership in 2013, and a decade on, this relationship has grown stronger and it is crystallised in the chronograph. The Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS Formula One team watch pays tribute to the “passion and determination of the team’s designers, aerodynamicists, race engineers, strategists and mechanics.” Its pink strap complements the driving team’s appearance at the race track, and this eye-catching pink hue also finds its way onto the gloves and shoes.

But before its official debut on the race circuit, members of Team Pink were seen wearing the new Pilot’s Watch Chronograph 41 Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS Formula One watch featuring a Miami Pink rubber strap. Team Green, on the other hand, sported wearing the green rubber strap.

From left to right: Lewis Hamilton, IWC Schaffhausen CEO Christoph Grainger-Herr and Simu Liu. Image: John Parra/Getty Images for IWC

First unveiled at the 2022 Miami Grand Prix, this timepiece is made from highly durable grade 5 titanium, a material introduced to the watch industry by IWC in the 1980s when they released the first wristwatch with a titanium case and bracelet. Titanium is commonly used in the automotive industry to produce components subjected to extreme pressure, such as engine valves, while boasting other properties like being corrosion-resistance and skin-friendly. The watch has a black dial with “PETRONAS” green printing and luminescence, which complements its striking design. It features the IWC-manufactured 69385 calibre movement, a sturdy chronograph movement with a column-wheel design that comprises 242 parts. The watch’s power reserve is 46 hours the wearer can view the impressive movement through the sapphire glass back.

Hamilton said more about the event: “It’s great to be back in Miami with IWC for their takeover of Jungle Plaza in the Miami Design District. It’s been a while since I’ve played basketball, so I was a little rusty, but I managed to hit a few hoops at least! I’ve been with the team for 10 years now and IWC have been with us for that entire journey, so I’m super proud to be wearing our IWC team watch with the Miami pink strap this weekend. Today we got to spend time with the Dibia DREAM charity who invited some awesome kids from the local Miami community. Dibia DREAM’s mission is to show kids that through education you can achieve anything you put your mind to, so it was great to be part of that.”

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