Bremont watches are designed to be fit-for-purpose in the most severe places on earth, they are designed to be Tested Beyond Endurance. To have the opportunity to work with record-breaking polar explorer Ben Saunders on the testing and development of a new Limited Edition watch for his latest Trans-Antarctic Solo Expedition was a natural progression further to the success of the purpose-built Terra Nova back in 2014. Whilst the Terra Nova was designed to accompany Ben on what was set to be the longest human-powered polar journey in history, an incredible 1,800 mile trip, the new Bremont Endurance set out with Ben in November 2017 to make the first solo and unsupported crossing of Antarctica. This west-to-east traverse from Berkner Island to the Ross Ice Shelf via the South Pole and the Shackleton Glacier was planned by Ben’s close friend Lt Col Henry Worsley, who nearly completed the expedition before falling ill and passing away in hospital in Chile in January 2016.
Named in honour of Shackleton’s most famous expedition – one which saw him rescue his entire crew after his ship ‘Endurance’ was crushed in the sea ice — the route of which Ben was retracing solo, the name is of course also a nod to the company maxim of being ‘Tested Beyond Endurance’. Shackleton getting his men back alive is one of the greatest stories of human endeavour and leadership, qualities Ben has certainly demonstrated over his twelve expeditions in the polar regions, having covered more than 7,000km north of the Arctic circle and South of the Antarctic circle since 2001. Naturally, the timepiece had to be able to withstand the extreme climate conditions of the Antarctic continent, being worn on the outside of Ben’s jacket to serve as a crucial navigational device with its GMT hand. The black dial together with its robust bi-directional rotating sapphire bezel features orange compass heading markers, complementing the North indicator on the GMT hand, all designed for ease of navigation and clarity against the stark white of Antarctica.
Having already tried and tested the Terra Nova walking 1,800 miles across Antarctica, to the South Pole and back, Saunders was keen to be involved in as much of the design process as possible, insisting on titanium again for its obvious lightweight advantages. Knowing the level of micro engineering that goes into these mechanical machines and how beautifully finished the Bremont movements are, Ben also felt strongly that the Endurance should have an exhibition case back. To that end Bremont designed a new back, one which was robust enough to enable the watch to still reach depths of 500m and still be able to function in the rigorous climate conditions of the Antarctic plateau. The development for the thicker case back came from a military project, drawing on the experience gained from the brand’s links and work in this area. Only being made in a limited run of 300 pieces, the Endurance features new
contemporary styling on the applied indexes and comes on an orange nato strap.
Bremont Co-Founder, Giles English; “As a business we are incredibly proud of Ben, he has an unrivalled list of polar achievements and we’re privileged to have him testing new watches for us out in the field. This is what we built the business on and is very much at the core of what we’re about as a brand. We actually had 3 adventurers all on Antarctica independently at the end of 2017 and to have had them all sporting Bremont is an honour; we’re thrilled to be the polar explorers watch of choice.”
Ben Saunders; “I am delighted to continue to be a Bremont brand ambassador. Bremont designed the bespoke Terra Nova watch for my 2013/2014 Scott Expedition, and I wore a prototype of the new Limited Edition Endurance during my Trans-Antarctic Solo Expedition. A reliable timepiece is a vital piece of equipment on a polar expedition, and this new watch performed faultlessly on some of the toughest conditions I’ve ever encountered.”