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The Week at Wilson with Blair Rickers: October 7th

Hello All,

Hope all is well and that you are enjoying the warm weather.

2012 Product Line Looking Great

The racquet line-up I saw at our recent sales meeting is absolutely stellar.   The frames look and play great, and with the new line segmentation they will be very easy to sell.  I’ll be out showing you the new line within the next four weeks.  I don’t want to give you all the details now, but here is a quick tease:

As many of you know, there will be a NEW Pro Staff Six.One 90 BLX for Roger.  The frame will be updated with a new technology in the handle called “Amplifeel”  Combining graphite and basalt planks in the pallet provides a clean and enhanced feel in the racquet.  The specs on Rogers frame will be very similar to his current stick.  We are also introducing a new Pro Staff Six.One 95 BLX.  It has the same cross section as the 90, only bigger head size and lighter (11 oz unstrung).  I know what you’re saying, “finally, a frame that feels like Roger’s, only lighter and more forgiving”.  Even more exciting is the NEW Six.One 100 BLX.  Same cross section as Roger’s frame (only a thicker beam of 22 cm) and MUCH lighter at 10.1 unstrung.  The target group for this frame is HUGE.  A hacker like me will enjoy it, as will an advanced player like our good friend Jason Collins (former Product Manager in Canada, now Wilson Product Manager for the World).  Pro Staff Six.One 100 BLX should be a fantastic seller.

Rickers’ Ramblings

  • Yes, the Buffalo Bills are 3-1 and headed to the Super Bowl.  Don’t let that loss to Cincinnati fool you, the Bills are on the way.  The good folks of Western New York deserve a winner, and Ryan Fitzpatrick is just the man to deliver the goods.
  • Why do we always go back and forth between Imperial and Metric when discussing racquets?  A frame is 27” long, weighs 10.5 oz, but has a beam of 22 mm?  What’s up with that?
  • Hank Williams got his theme song (All My Rowdy Friends) removed from Monday Night Football after comparing Obama to Hitler (perhaps All His Racist Friends are Coming Over Tonight).  Do you ever notice that any argument you have on the internet ends with someone using the phrase, “_________ is worse than Hitler.”  As much as some people dislike them, I think it is fair to say that Mike Harris, Stephen Harper, Sarah Palin, Bono, Celine Dion, and Gary Bettman are NOT worse than Hitler.  This type of dialogue should be deleted from our popular lexicon.
  • Our last sales meeting was in beautiful Kiawah Island near Charleston, South Carolina.  What a gorgeous spot.  Nothing like getting up early each morning and jogging on the beach as the sun rises.  It’s a must visit if you are a serious golfer.  The Ocean Course is going to host the PGA Championship in 2012.
  • After recent experiences with my son’s soccer team I am convinced that youth sports would be much better without parental involvement.
  • A friend of mine has a son playing for the Owen Sound Attack of the OHL.  I took the family to check out a game at the Hershey Centre against the Mississauga-St. Michael’s Majors.  Great arena, awesome game, kids loved it, but I’ll NEVER go back again.  Note to the Hershey Centre:  $16 for kids tickets?  Really???

The weather is going to be amazing this weekend.  Enjoy your Thanksgiving.  A happy Yom Kippur, as well.

A New Reality By Nicolas Pereira

This past week in the World Team Tennis ‘Bubble” I have seen the efforts to keep everyone safe while carrying on a team competition with around 60/70 players and coaches onsite. Counting organizers, officials, media, and support personnel are around 150 people trying hard to make this happen. I am very impressed by how the strict protocol has been handled and how everyone is invested in making this event a success, but The Open is a completely different scale of details.

ONcourt Interviews NGTL Co-Founder Yves Boulais

It does not matter that you get your rating playing locally or that you had spent an insidious amount of money playing the ITF junior tour tournaments. Your rating is your level of play (you get no bonus for playing more or playing far away). This allows us to break free of the ITF competitive structure potentially saving us time, money, and headache. We see this as a great opportunity to improve the logistic of our sport.

Brandon Burke (son of ACE President Doug Burke) Elected to WTA Board

As revealed in a recent news release issued by the WTA Tour – Brandon Burke has been elected to the WTA Board of Directors (to start officially in September). Oncourt got together with Brandon to delve a bit more into his background and to gain some insight into this wonderful appointment he has attained at such a young age.