Jack Nicklaus’ iconic Rolex sells for $1.22 million at Phillips New York auction

December 11, 2019

“It doesn’t just tell time, it tells history.” So goes the ubiquitous Rolex TV commercial, which showcases some of the most historic golf moments the brand has been affiliated with, from Arnie and Jack to Tiger and Jordan Spieth.

On Tuesday, both watch aficionados and golf history buffs had a rare chance to own a piece of that history when Jack Nicklaus’ iconic yellow-gold Rolex Day-Date Reference 1803 was auctioned at Phillips New York. The winning price? A whopping $1.22 million, with the proceeds benefiting the Nicklaus Children’s Health Care Foundation.

The Golden Bear received the watch as a gift from Rolex in 1967, and it adorned his wrist nearly every day since. Indeed, the watch was present for 12 of his record 18 major wins, including his last at the 1986 Masters.

“Parting ways with this watch is certainly bittersweet,” Nicklaus said before the auction. “While I will certainly miss the opportunity of wearing the watch and having it serve as a constant reminder of some of my life’s most memorable moments, I know that parting with it will help countless children and families impacted through the work of the Nicklaus Children’s Health Care Foundation.”

For more on the story behind the Rolex, click here.

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