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TRAVEL REPORT: The Jaeger-LeCoultre Navy SEALs mini SEAL Week in Coronado CA



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Published on 07-25-2010 02:19 PM

Number of Views: 10254

TRAVEL REPORT: The Jaeger-LeCoultre Navy SEALs mini SEAL Week in Coronado, CA By: John B. Holbrook, II

6/22/10 - 6/25/10

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Last month, I was invited by Jaeger-LeCoultre to attend their first Navy SEALs mini SEAL Week in Coronado, CA - a celebration of the relationship Jaeger-LeCoultre has with the US Navy SEALs. For those unfamiliar, the Navy SEALs are an elite, special forces unit which was established by President John Fitzgerald Kennedy in 1962. This partnership between Jaeger-LeCoultre and the Navy SEALs started in 2008 though Jaeger-LeCoultre's ongoing support of the Navy SEAL Museum in Fort Pierce, Florida. It was at that time that Jaeger-LeCoultre unveiled their first Master Compressor Diving Navy SEALs collection, which has proven quite popular among both fans of JLC and supporters of the SEALS. The geographic proximity to the Navy SEALs training base in Coronado has created a particularly strong following for the Master Compressor Navy SEALs collection, making Coronado an ideal location for JLC's first NAVY SEALs celebratory event.

I flew to San Diego on Tuesday, June 22nd - Jaeger-LeCoultre was kind enough to have me picked up at the airport:

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From the San Diego airport, it's only about a 20 minute drive across the bay to Coronado Island and one of my favorite resorts in the entire world - the Del Coronado:

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If you'd like to see some high-res shots I took of "The Del" just click here to head over to my photography website, ThruMyLens.

I ascertained that JLC was pretty serious about this Navy Seal business when I arrived to my room and found the below:

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Jaeger-LeCoultre also introduced their latest addition to the Master Compressor Diving Navy SEALs collection - the Incursion Edition. The limited edition Incursion Edition models are only available in the Beverly Hills boutique store. Since 2008, two reservist US Navy SEALs have been using the Master Compressor Diving Navy SEALs alarm during their deployments and training excercises. In addition to gathering performance information about the watch in an operational and tactical environment, they have visually documented their experiences with the timepiece as well. Tuesday evening I had the opportunity to meet the two SEALs who have been field testing the Master Compressor Diving Navy SEAL models - their feedback has resulted in changes and enhancements which can be seen on the new Incursion Edition. During dinner we were also told that the invited guests would be participating in several activities over the next two days which not only simulate conditions in which the Master Compressor Diving Navy SEAL models were tested, but also give us some insight to the rigors of Navy SEAL Training.

Following an early breakfast the next morning, my group was transported to the the first activity of the event. Here's a shot of the Cadillac Escalades parked in front of the Del Coronado which JLC used for transport during the event.

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Our first activity of the event was skydiving. We were transported to a remote commercial skydiving recreation and instruction facility which the Navy SEALs also use for training. A shot of our cavalcade arriving at the facility:

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Since I have about as much desire to jump out of a perfectly good airplane with a parachute as I do without one, I sat out of this particular activity (along with a few other sensibly minded folks). But I did get some nice photos. Here you can see a SEAL doing a training jump, with a rucksack deployed:

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Here's a pair of more advanced SEAL "Leapfrogs" practicing a "show" maneuver where they lock legs and spin in mid-air:

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Here's a couple of shot of the members of our group which did decide to do the tethered skydive taking off for their jump:

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Jaeger-LeCoultre and CEO Jerome Lambert was given the honor of actually jumping with a team of Navy SEALs and was presented with a nice keepsake following the jump.

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After the skydiving was finished, we were transported to a commercial firearm range for an activity which was far more up my alley - target shooting. We had a nice lunch and enjoyed some firearm safety instruction from the SEALs, and we were given an overview of the firearms we'd be using - all examples of what the SEALs use in the field. The assortment of firearms we shot included the Sig Sauer P228 (9mm), the M4 Assault Rifle, the AK-47, the Benelli M4 Super 90 twelve gauge Shotgun, a S&W 686 .357, and a MK23 Mod 0 .45 cal. Here's some photos from the range:

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This activity was by far the most fun I had during the event - it was an absolute blast (no pun intended). While I own and have fired an assortment of both hand guns and long guns (a S&W .357 is my personal weapon of choice) I've never fired an M4 Assault Riffle or an AK-47 before. The M4 was surprisingly light an easy to fire...until it was put into "3 round burst mode"...then I wasn't so accurate with it.

Thursday we were back at breakfast early, then on to the next event - a base tour! We were transported to the

Naval Special Warfare Center which is the starting point for all prospective SEALs. This is the location where the legendary selection course, BUD/S (Basic Underwater Demolition / SEAL) is held. The Center is also home to all West Coast based SEAL Teams.

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We got to meet and talk to a SEAL team which had just returned from a tour in Afghanistan. They brought some of the heavy weaponry they use in theater.

Sniper riffle:

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The grenade gun was amazingly light (made from composite materials).

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Jaeger-LeCoultre's Philippe Bonay:

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Next we were taken on a guided tour of the ridiculously difficult obstacle course.

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Yours truly climbing up the net with Kate Montini, JLC's Public Relations Manager:

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During the event we did get the opportunity to spend some hands-on time with the new Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Alarm Navy SEALs Beverly Hills Boutique Incursion Editions:

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Special packaging and accessory items - very cool:

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Here are the specifications for the Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Alarm Navy SEALs Beverly Hills Boutique Incursion Editions:

Movement: mechanical automatic Jaeger-LeCoultre Calibre 956, crafted, assembled and decorated by hand; 28,800 vibrations per hour; 45-hour power reserve; 268 parts; 23 jewels; 7.45 mm thick

Case: 44 mm in titanium with black pvd coating or grey pvd coating

Functions: hours, minutes, seconds, date, alarm

Dial: Color accents: Orange or yellow on the second hand tip and compressor crown arrows with addition of the same color to inner ring numerical five second interval markings.

Two tone:

-black outer ring with stamped and luminescent hour-markers and numerals,

-charcoal grey inner alarm ring with circular finish matching the case

Date: white numerals transferred against a black background

Hands: hours and minutes: trapeze-shaped, open worked, luminescent

Crowns: one black rubber-molded crown at 2 o’clock equipped with a compression key, for winding the alarm, adjusting it and fast date adjustment; one black rubber-molded crown at 4 o’clock equipped with a compression key, for starting the watch and adjusting the time.

Straps: black leather with matching orange or yellow stitching and PVD buckle. Diving strap in black Cordura®


Accessories:
Unique packaging that goes hand in hand with the theme of Incursion Edition.

Price: $13,000.00 US for both versions.

As someone who works with a US Air Force government contractor, I interact daily with military personnel and have a deep respect the US Military. So I was very excited and truly honored to be able to spend some time with these Navy SEAL team members and gain a deeper appreciation for the rigorous qualification and training they undergo to achieve and maintain elite SEAL team membership. And my deepest sympathies are extended to any force which would stand between a Navy SEAL and their mission objective.

Many thanks to Jaeger-LeCoultre for including me in this very exciting, entertaining, and educational event!

**Photos & Text (unless otherwise noted) Copyright 2010 WATCH TALK FORUMS, INC. No part of this report can be reproduced outside of WATCH TALK FORUMS without the expressed permission of John B. Holbrook, II.


This article was originally published in forum thread:

TRAVEL REPORT: The Jaeger-LeCoultre Navy SEALs mini SEAL Week in Coronado, CA>>>>
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