2009 Stringer of the Year: Ron Rocchi
Ron Rocchi’s first job, in seventh grade, was stringing for a local shop near Chicago. Now, as Wilson’s global tour equipment manager, he’s tasked with designing products, including performance racquets.
His drive to offer players the best possible in products and services has led to the formation of the Wilson Stringing Team, the innovative Baiardo stringing machine, and a desire to elevate the standards of stringing. In fact, few people have done more to raise the profile of racquet stringers than Rocchi. And for 2009, he is RSI’s Stringer of the Year.
The Wilson Stringing Team includes many of the best stringers in the world. The team is the official stringers for the US Open, Australian Open, Sony Ericsson, and 25 to 30 other ATP and WTA events. “Customer service is at the forefront,” Rocchi says. “Our customers, the top pros in the world, expect the very best quality and service.
“But another thing we highlight is the tremendous job that stringers do,” he adds. “For decades, it’s been somewhat of an overlooked profession.”
“All of the practices that Ron’s instituted for his team are helping to raise professional standards,” says David Bone, the executive director of the U.S. Racquet Stringers Association (and co-publisher of Racquet Sports Industry). “And that filters right down to the recreational level, too.”
“Ron is great to work with,” says Tim Strawn, founder of the Grand Slam Stringers Symposium, at which Rocchi has presented for the last three years. “Ron knows what he wants. And he really puts his heart into it.”
Tips for success
- Whether stringing for pro or rec players, it’s about personal interaction, quality stringing and customer service.
- Know string patterns, types and tensions to become an expert in custom-fitting clients.
- Become “super-detail-focused” — have standard methods, for instance always tying a certain unique knot.
See all articles by Peter Francesconi
About the Author
Peter Francesconi is editorial director of RSI magazine.