That’s right who would have thought that a roughly $300 Rolex Daytona bought by Newman’s wife Joanne Woodward in the late 1960’s would have fetched a cool $17.8 million (US) in late 2017. So here’s the back story, Paul Newman, actor, race car driver, IndyCar owner, entrepreneur, philanthropist, and activist etc. gave the watch to a man in 1984 by the name of James Cox, who was dating his daughter while helping him fix a tree house. Apparently Newman asked Cox what the time was so he could set his watch and Cox said he didn’t have a watch so Newman gave him one, the Rolex Daytona, lucky guy. So what’s up with that engraving? When Newman and Woodward starred together in the 1969 film “Winning” about a guy that wanted to win the Indianapolis 500, Newman took up stock car racing training and then the sport, which did not please Woodward, because of the dangers involved, so she had engraved on the back “DRIVE CAREFULLY ME”. The model reference number of the watch is 6239 and was introduced in 1963 and stopped in the early 1970’s. The watch became so synonymous with Newman it was aptly nicknamed by Rolex aficionados the “Paul Newman Daytona”. A portion of the proceeds from the auction went to the Nell Newman Foundation.
(Source: Uncrate & Wall Street Journal. Image: Supplied)