Man chimes the second and wheels into history. How do you measure this sporting greatness? Tissot tells us their 50 years’ worth of timekeeping tales, bringing us to their ‘time machine’ of supreme precision at the 103rd edition of the Tour de France (TdF).
Imagine keeping pace with the official timekeeper of the world’s top cycling event. We tell you now, we tell you straight. It’s a story that would be hard to keep up with, if it were not for Mr. Alain Zobrist, CEO of Tissot Timing, who took Cycling Malaysia behind the scenes, showing us how they watch the win from start to finish—our favorite time at TdF!
YOUR TIMING PARTNER
The whole world zeroes in on the sports clock on the television feed, as cyclists, separated by only thousands of a second at the finish line, go for a mad rush. This is Le Tour de France, where cycling champs from all over the world take their chance at the yellow jersey. While the world watches the game, Tissot has been watching the time.
Innovators by Tradition is the signature Tissot stands by, since their once upon a time began in 1853. Still at home in Le Locle, Switzerland, the largest traditional Swiss watch brand was chosen to keep the entire TdF ticking.
Over 160 countries around the world bear witness to the arrival of many pioneering Tissot creations, but their presence in the dynamic world of sports has made them a key player in championships since they entered the sports timekeeping field in 1938.
Over the years, Tissot has been the Official Timekeeper and Partner of many disciplines such as basketball, motorsports, rugby and cycling.
Cycling is one the sports that the Swiss brand has been most involved in. In their cycling calendar, high-profile events, including the UCI World Cycling Championships, trust their timing and delivery.
“Tissot has been doing timekeeping for cycling since 1953—the biggest stage races. We have developed a lot of technologies all these years. Today, it’s Tissot’s first time back in TdF since the 80s!” Mr. Alain added, “It’s a long-term contract now.”
Tissot was the Official Timekeeper of TdF from 1988 to 1992. One too many road, trails, MTB and BMX cycling world championships after, they’re back for the biggest race. Gone were the golden days of hand-held stopwatches. Timekeeping is now driven by precision technology. Embedded sensors are everywhere on the tracks, transponders are fixed on the bikes, and computers control the entire integrated system. Mr. Alain took his time in showing and explaining how the timekeeping works. He made sure we didn’t miss a thing.