Tennis Industry magazine


Industry News

Information to help you run your business.

Midland, Mich., Named America’s ‘Best Tennis Town’

The town of Midland, Mich., was named the winner of the USTA’s “Best Tennis Town” search, the first-ever initiative designed to identify and reward American communities that best exemplify the passion, excitement, spirit and impact that tennis brings to the local level.

The announcement was made during a special ceremony in Arthur Ashe Stadium during the US Open. As America’s “Best Tennis Town,” Midland — which garnered the most votes during the nationwide, online balloting period in July — will receive a $100,000 grant from the USTA to be used for community-wide tennis programming or facility enhancements.

The city of Ojai, Calif., the first runner-up, received a $50,000 community tennis grant for their local tennis programs, and second runner-up Independence, Mo., will receive a $25,000 grant.

“We do our best to exemplify the community spirit that is at the heart of the USTA’s mission,” said Mike Woody, executive director of the Midland Tennis Center, who received the trophy and $100,000 grant check on behalf of Midland.

Midland, with a population of 41,685, beat out a total of 56 cities in the competition. “We were overwhelmed by the enthusiasm of all of the entrants,” said Kurt Kamperman, the USTA’s chief executive of Community Tennis.

Head USA Appoints New CEO and New President

Head announced that Jeremy Sherwood, Executive Director Global Sales & Marketing, has been appointed as CEO of Head USA, with responsibility for Racquet Sport, Winter Sport and Diving Divisions. He succeeds Dave Haggerty, who has held the position for the past 11 years.

Haggerty will become chairman of Head USA and take on a more limited operational role in order to devote more time toward his volunteer tennis efforts, represent Head on the Tennis Industry Association board of directors, his pursuit of guest lecturing at the university level and spending more time with his family, the company said in a statement released in August. Haggerty is on the TIA’s executive committee and also is a member of the USTA’s board of directors.

Sherwood has been based in the United Kingdom since joining Head in 2001 as the UK Managing Director. In January 2008, Sherwood took over managing Head’s global network of subsidiaries and distributors. In his new role as CEO of Head USA, he will relocate to Phoenix, where he will combine his duties as executive director of Global Sales & Marketing with the day-to-day running of Head’s U.S. operations.

Prior to joining Head, he held positions with Benetton Sportsystems, Wilson Sporting Goods, Adidas and also owned his own sports distribution business in the U.K. Sherwood played professional squash for a number of years in the mid-1970s.

Head also announced the promotion of Kevin Kempin to president of Head/Penn Racquet Sports. Kempin has over 16 years of experience in the Head USA Racquet Division, most recently as VP of Sales and Marketing. He will continue to manage Head USA’s Racquet Sports and assist with Head’s global Racquet Sports efforts. Kempin has been in the racquet sports industry for more than 25 years.

“I’m confident that Jeremy and Kevin will show continued success in their new roles,” said Johan Eliasch, chairman and CEO of Head N.V. “Their dedication will help in the development and growth of the Head and Penn brands in the US.”

ASBA Tech Meeting in Savannah Dec. 5-7

The American Sports Builders Association’s annual Technical Meeting will be Dec. 5 to 7 at the Hyatt Regency in Savannah, Ga. The meeting will include state-of-the-art sessions on advanced technique in sports facility design, construction and materials, as well as other “how to” programs directed at those who want a more hands-on approach.

The agenda includes presentations on keeping overhead and labor costs down, tennis court lighting, clay courts, media and marketing, crossover business opportunities, moisture problems and more. The complete program is at

There also will be an exhibit hall to showcase the newest products and services, social events to facilitate networking, golf and tennis tournaments, presentations of industry awards, exams for those interested in the ASBA’s professional certification program, and more.

“The Technical Meeting is one of our most popular gatherings, and this year, it’s more valuable and important than ever,” said George Todd, CTCB, chairman of ASBA. “It can be useful to everyone from designers to builders to suppliers.” For more information, contact the ASBA at 866-501-ASBA (2722) or 410-730-9595, or e-mail

Deco Extends Contract With US Open

DecoTurf and the USTA have extended their 31-year contract, making Deco the official surface of the US Open through December 2014.

DecoTurf’s partnership with the US Open has included the multi-layer cushioned surface that is on all 34 outdoor courts at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, including Arthur Ashe Stadium. DecoTurf also covers the 12 indoor courts in the new 245,000-square-foot USTA Indoor Training Center, which opened in November 2008. The surface is also constructed on courts that host the Olympus US Open Series leading up to the US Open.

“We are thrilled to extend our contract with DecoTurf for six years,” said Jim Curley, Chief Professional Tournaments Officer, USTA. “The US Open and DecoTurf are a natural partnership, providing the most recognized court surface at one of the world’s most prestigious tournaments.”

12 Tennis Facilities Honored By USTA

Twelve tennis facilities were honored recently with 2009 Outstanding Facility Awards, which were presented at the USTA Semi-Annual Meeting held in New York City during the US Open. USTA President Lucy Garvin, along with USTA Technical Committee chairwoman Peggy Beard and awards co-chair Alex Levitsky, presented the honors.

The winning facilities are:

Recipients were selected based on criteria that includes overall layout and adaptation to the site, ease of maintenance, aesthetics, amenities, and programs supporting the USTA and the growth of tennis overall. To nominate a facility for the 2010 awards, email the USTA Technical Department at

Half-Racquet Idea Promotes US Open Sponsor

One of the US Open’s largest sponsors, Mass Mutual, used half a tennis racquet to call attention to one of its insurance programs. The insurance company’s premise is that you can’t live on half a paycheck, and you can’t successfully play tennis with half a racquet.

Visitors to the Mass Mutual booth on the grounds of the Open got the opportunity to hit with the half racquet to try and make contact with balls lobbed to them on a mini-court.

The half racquet itself is the product of Master Racquet Technician Tony Taverna, who owns Perfect Racquet, the largest tennis retailing shop in New England. “It was challenging and exciting coming up with the prototype and stringing for half a racquet,” he says. — Cynthia Sherman

New Ashaway Technology for Badminton Strings

ZyWeaVe technology allows Ashaway to produce a string that is 25 percent lighter than standard 0.70mm badminton strings. The company plans to introduce a new line of strings using the new technology under the brand name ZyMax. For more information, call 800-556-7260, email or visit

USTA Reports Record-Setting Open

The USTA says the 2009 US Open was experienced by more fans on-site, on television and online than ever before.

USPTA Announces New National Board

The USPTA installed its new national board of directors in September at the USPTA World Conference on Tennis, held at the Marco Island Marriott Resort, Golf Club and Spa on Marco Island, Fla. The new board will serve until September 2011. Officers include a new president, vice presidents and secretary-treasurer.

The USPTA board manages the association’s affairs between meetings of the larger USPTA Executive Committee, which includes the board, three past national presidents, and elected leaders from each of the USPTA’s 17 domestic divisions. Board members are nominated by a committee composed of Executive Committee members.

Maine’s Greene Named USPTA Pro of the Year

Robert Greene Jr. of Rangeley, Maine, the director of tennis at the Balsams Grand Resort Hotel in Dixville Notch, N.H., received the USPTA’s Alex Gordon Award for the Professional of the Year. Greene has been a USPTA Professional 1 for more than 30 years.

Greene is a former USPTA New England Division president and served on the National Executive Committee from 1998 to 2001. He is also currently on the USPTA New England Division Testing Committee. In addition, he has been highly involved with the USTA. He has served as the chair of the USTA Olympic Tennis Committee since 2006. He has also served as president of the USTA New England Section and served on several committees.

USPTA Recognizes Standouts in the Tennis Profession

The USPTA honored outstanding tennis coaches, players, managers and volunteers during its annual national awards ceremony at the World Conference on Tennis.

Other honorees are:

The following have been named Player of the Year in their respective divisions:

USPTA divisions receiving awards are:

USPTA Honors Top Education Participants

The USPTA honored Alan Cutler from Whittier, Calif., as the top credit-earner in USPTA’s Career Development Program. Cutler earned the most continuing education credits — an incredible 172 — in the 2008 program. He is a USPTA Master Pro and the director of tennis for He also is a member of the National Advisory staff for Head/Penn.

Other top education participants for 2008 include: Ken DeHart, Doug Eng, Paul Garron, Mark Fairchilds, Jack Foster, Feisal Hassan, Skip Johnson, Stan Oley and Jeff Rothstein.

Education merit awards for 10 years of continuing-education participation went to Mark Faber and John Yandell.

Short Sets

Nine Earn USPTA Master Pro Designation

Nine tennis professionals recently earned recognition as USPTA Master Professionals. Only about 1 percent of USPTA’s more than 15,000 members worldwide have achieved the Master Pro designation.

Members must hold USPTA’s highest certification rating (Professional 1) for more than 10 years before becoming eligible for the Master Professional designation. Then, each must fulfill a broad spectrum of requirements, including making significant achievements in areas such as tennis teaching and coaching, business, education and volunteer work. The new Master Pros are:

“Becoming a Master Professional requires meeting a variety of personal and professional challenges,” said USPTA CEO Tim Heckler. “Those who accomplish it acquire a set of skills that can set them apart in tennis operations and programming.”

Congratulations to these new certified stringers

New Certified Stringer

Kevin Cornwell, Hilo, HI

New Master Racquet Technicians

Matt Greaves, Toronto CANADA
Robert Whitsitt, Memphis, TN


PTR Offers Adidas with Rocky Mountain Sports

The PTR has signed an agreement making Rocky Mountain Sports and its Adidas line the official apparel and shoes of PTR. Members will be able to purchase Adidas clothing with PTR insignia and Adidas shoes for approximately 40 percent off retail prices.

RMS has served the tennis community for more than 30 years and offers a full spectrum of products, including major tennis brands Adidas, Head, Wilson and others.

“Adidas was PTR’s apparel and shoe sponsor in the ‘80s, and we are excited to come full circle and offer this quality product line to our members again,” said Dan Santorum, PTR CEO. “Rocky Mountain Sports has been a solid fixture in the industry and is known for providing impeccable customer service, a trait that PTR values and that is the core of our philosophy.”

Fox Sports Net to Televise Outback Series Matches

Fox Sports Net and InsideOut Sports & Entertainment announced that the network will televise matches on the Outback Champions Series each Thursday night, through December 2009. The Series debuted nationally on Fox Sports Net on Oct. 1, with a match between two-time French and Australian Open champion Jim Courier and 2003 Wimbledon finalist Mark Philippoussis in the semifinals of The Residences at The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman Legends Championships.

The three-month stretch of tournament coverage also includes select replays on weekends. It will feature action from Outback Champions Series events in Newport, R.I., Charlotte, N.C., and Surprise, Ariz. For full television listings, visit

Circle C Members Step Up to Help School

When a member of Circle C Tennis Club in Austin, Texas, learned that the Akins High School storage room had been vandalized and students’ tennis rackets were stolen, the club contacted the members asking for donations of used rackets. In less than five days, the club collected more than 40 racquets. Wilson Sporting Goods contributed strings and grips if frames needed to be repaired.

Make Money With Custom Stencils

RacquetArt manufactures and sells stock and custom tennis racquet stencils, so your customers can have their own distinctive stencil on their strings. In addition, the company sells a large selection of colored stencil ink. RacquetArt also can produce your customers’ initials as a stencil.

A special offer for racquet stringing professionals includes two stencils and two bottles of ink for $19.95 plus shipping and handling. Stencils are made from high-quality plastic that won’t wear out and can be used repeatedly. Each ink bottle can stencil up to 10 racquets.

Other offers are available. Visit or email

Hinding Installs Rooftop Court in New York

The New York Sports Club in Brooklyn, N.Y., recently installed Hinding Tennis’ Cushion Extreme surface on the building’s roof. “I couldn’t believe the feel and comfort,” said tennis pro Michael Phillips, who researched court surfaces for the club. For information on Cushion Extreme, contact 203-410-6090 or visit

Babolat Enhances Pure Storm Line, Extends Pure Drive Line

Babolat says its Pure Storm line has been enhanced with GT Technology, which the company says gives frames more responsiveness and power.

GT technology, says Babolat, is a customized performance booster with a hybrid material that combines braided carbon fibers and tungsten filaments, which is integrated throughout the racquet. This strengthens the frame to reduce torque, aiding in precision. Also, adding tungsten provides 10 percent more energy recovery for even more power, according to Babolat.

GT Technology can be found in all new Pure Storm models. Babolat is also launching a new co-polymer polyester monofilament string, called Revenge, for the Pure Storm frame.

Babolat also has extended the Pure Drive line of racquets with a new Pure Drive Lite and enhanced Pure Drive 107. Both have the new GT Technology with graphit tungsten.

Visit or call 877-316-9435.

Pure storm Tour

Pure Storm Tour +

Pure Storm

Pure Storm Limited

Pure Drive Lite

Pure Drive 107



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