Jaeger - LeCoultre, Verso - Reverso

Jaeger - LeCoultre, Verso - Reverso
The synergy between competitive sport and timekeeping has existed since the advent of the chronograph.
Record breaking performances by athletes have been measured and immortalised by high performance instruments at events such as the Olympics and every sport’s respective World Championships.
Today, our social media feed is bombarded with images of athletes from Cristiano Ronaldo and his rare and exorbitantly priced watches to candid, courtside photographs of Michael Jordan sporting high-end chronographs.
This continually evolving relationship between sport and timekeeping has been around way before the age of social media and the visual stimulation of Instagram as we know it today.
Actor Benedict Cumberbatch at the JLC Workshop
On that note, let's go back in time to the year 1931 and the invention of a timepiece created out of the necessity not just to record time but to protect the timepiece itself.
I'm referring to the Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso and the story of how it came to be.
British Officers serving in India found that the movement and dial of their watches would get smashed during Polo matches. To find a solution, the officers approached watchmaker César De Trey who in turn sought a collaboration between Jacques David LeCoultre and the firm Jaeger S.A.
The collaboration resulted in a patent and design from French engineer René-Alfred Chavot for his reversible case. The case was built to slide out of a surrounding frame and rotate a hundred and eighty degrees. To execute this complicated operation, a multiplicity of pins, grooves and a locking mechanism enabled the solid metal back to become the protective shield that when reversed became the face of the watch. This shielded the delicate dial and movement that powered it from damage.
The movement of this mechanism inspired the name 'Reverso'.
Early ad featuring the Reverso
Drawings of the reversible mechanism submitted to be patented
With its ingenious solution, it's no surprise that the commercial manufacture of a watch case containing thirty parts would follow. In the years since, the watch and the story of its origin have become an integral part of Jaeger-LeCoultre's history.
Impeccable and stunning craftsmanship of the JLC Caseback
Today, this sports watch with a distinctive Art Deco design is considered timeless. Initially, owners of the timepiece saw the blank case back as a canvas for engraving personal touches like initials, family crests or forms of self- expression that held sentimental value.
Over the years, the range has expanded to drop the protective case back, exposing the movement through a visible case. This made for a perfect dress watch shedding the utility born on the polo field.
My personal favourite is the Reverso Grande Sun Moon. The watch features two dials, one that displays time, a moon-phase complication and a day night indicator, while the other shows off the spectacularly stunning movement with its combination of blue screws and jewels representing the celestial sky.
It would be remiss not to mention the brands’ most highly complicated Reverso model - the limited edition Reverso Grande Complication Triptyque. Designing two faces on a single watch with multiple complications was clearly not satisfying enough for this premier brand.The Triptyque features three dials (including one on the carrier plate) and a Grand Complication. One dial tells time, another the Sidereal time and the third features a Perpetual calendar! This timepiece represents all that is admirable and enviable about Jaeger-LeCoultre. To preserve a unique vintage design and fit in all the  marvels of modern technology, the Grand Complication holds pride of place in many watch connoisseurs' collections.
Left - The Limited Edition Reverso Triptyque with three dials
If I may respectfully suggest, here's how they could have taken to this next level and possibly will someday in the future. The addition of a second set of the sliding mechanism would have enabled all three dials to be viewed centred with the strap rather than the third dial being on display only when the case housing the first two is slid to one side. 
The superlative German automobile brand Porsche has remained one of my favourites. I have truly admired how the overall integrity of design seen in the Porsche 911 has remained largely unchanged, irrespective of the evolving technology that has made it faster, lighter and more aerodynamic. This is a feature reminiscent of Jaeger-LeCoultre's Reverso where the inbuilt technology over time has never compromised the original shape or concept of the watch.
Jaeger-LeCoultre is often called the watchmakers watchmaker for their highest standards of chronometry, innovation and timekeeping. I noticed the Reverso for the very first time on the wrist of the man we know as 007 in the movie, The Thomas Crown Affair. I shall leave saving the world and firing rockets out of an Aston Martin for another day and pause once again to absorb the sheer classical beauty of the Reverso which for me will forever remain timeless!
Actor Pierce Brosnan seen wearing the Reverso in 'The Thomas Crown Affair'