Men aren’t the only athletes in the world making some serious doe. There are millionaire female athletes sprinkled throughout the world as well. There’s a little thing called endorsements making them just as much if not more money than they make playing the game. The highest earners of the bunch venture into the realm of double digit millions annually, meaning they are set for life. Some of these athletes you may have heard of while others may come as a surprise. If one thing is for sure, there is one particular sport cooking up the most bacon for women.
10. Paula Creamer – Golf – $5.5 million
Country club sports are the biggest moneymakers for women. Most major sports, especially in America, are only popular for men. Mainly due to the physicality of the sport. Paula Creamer is the first and only golfer on the list. She tears it up on the course too! On the LPGA Tour, she has won a staggering 10 events. All golfers out there know how difficult it is to win even 1. Outside of the LPGA, Creamer has won 2 other tournaments during her illustrious career.
As mentioned earlier, endorsements are a big part of an athlete’s salary. Creamer has deals with Ricoh, Citizen and Bridgestone Golf. Not too shabby at all. To give you an idea of how much a golfer can bring home for winning a tournament, Creamer pocketed $210,000 at the HSBC Women’s Championships. That’s more than most people have in there life savings, and she made it in just one weekend. Currently, she is ranked #2 in the world by Women’s World Golf.
9. Ana Ivanovic – Tennis – $7 million
Ivanovic is making Serbia as proud as ever to have her representing their country. As you can see, her earnings are beyond even the highest earner in women’s golf. She’s not the last tennis player on the list either. Women’s tennis is the best sport for a women to master if she wants to make some serious cash.
In 2014, Ana won three tennis titles including: Monterrey, Birmingham and Aukland. For her work, she has earned a lifetime endorsement with Adidas as reported by Forbes.com. In result, Ana has earned herself a steady paycheck for life and won’t have to worry about money after retirement. A luxury everyone in the world wouldn’t mind having.
Aside from tennis stardom, Ana is also renowned for her Eastern European beauty and charm. More beauty equals more endorsements for the young woman. She currently ranks at #12 in the world in her craft.
8. Agnieszka Radwanska – Tennis – $7.4 million
There’s just something about Eastern Europe and great tennis players. Meet another female tennis player with deep pockets. Radwanska hails from Poland. An interesting fact about Radwanska, is she is the first athlete to receive an endorsement from Cheesecake Factory. It is rather strange since most people wouldn’t pair cheesecake with athleticism. Cheesecake is one of the most fattening desserts in the world. In addition to having her cheesecake endorsement, Lexus has given her a deal as well as Lotto and Babolat. The young tennis pro is making money from every angle.
One of her notable achievements was becoming the first Polish tennis player to reach a Grand Slam singles final in the Open Era. An achievement Poland is surely proud about. Making $7.4 million a year isn’t too bad either. If she keeps it up, she’ll be living the super high life for the rest of days, and her descendants will get their pockets lined as well.
7. Caroline Wozniacki – Tennis – $13.6 million
At one point, Caroline Wozniacki was crushing it in the tennis world. She is still great, but not quite her former self. Being a beautiful blonde with blue eyes doesn’t hurt either. During her peak, she was dating famous golfer Rory Mcllroy. Maybe the split affected her game?
Nevertheless, she is still one of the highest earning female athletes in the world. Like another tennis player on this list, Wozniacki has a premier endorsement deal with Adidas. Adidas sure does love its female tennis players.
Before her slight decline, Caroline had reached the #1 world ranking in women’s tennis. She came close but never won one of the coveted Major Titles. There is one tennis player we all know who makes it difficult for anyone else to touch a Major trophy. Outside of the Majors, she has won 21 tournaments. Some of her other sponsors include: Proactiv, Sony Ericsson, Rolex and Yonex. The next female athlete is from a sport not mentioned yet…
6. Kim Yuna – Figure Skating – $14 million
Tennis isn’t the only sport females can master in order to become millionaires. Figure skating can make a woman a great deal of money if she is at the top of the elegant sport. The South Korean, Kim Yuna, brings home a huge paycheck every year that ventures into the double digit millions. Her biggest sponsors are Samsung and Hyundai Motors. It’s nice to see the two Asian based companies giving love to one of their own. In Korea, she receives several other sponsorships and appearances in commercials to further her earnings.
Her skating career has been nothing short of brilliant. In 2010, she was an Olympic champion. The Olympics is the biggest event for figure skaters. People who are not fans of the sport tune in when it’s the big dance. She was also the world champion in 2009 and 2013. Although she has had huge success on the ice, the bulk of her salary comes from endorsements.
5. Danica Patrick – Auto Racing – $15 million
Everyone knows Danica Patrick. You know the Go Daddy girl and famous race car driver. What really put her on the map is the fact that she is hot and drives against the big boys. She has been at the middle of this list for the past few years now. Go Daddy isn’t the only company endorsing her either, she has deals with XM Radio, Motorola and Coca-Cola. Wouldn’t you love lining your fridge with infinite amounts of free Coke? Yes, you would.
Danica is by far one of the most successful women to ever compete in American open-wheel racing. Her career doesn’t look like it’s going anywhere anytime soon either. She has become a staple in her craft and one with Go Daddy. There’s no doubt, she will be sitting pretty for the rest of her days.
4. Victoria Azarenka – Tennis – $15.7 million
You must be saying to yourself, “Wow yet another tennis player?” Well, the list of female tennis players doesn’t stop here. The sport we alluded to in the opener is in fact tennis. Guess where Azarenka comes from? You guessed it, Eastern Europe. They take tennis super serious in Eastern Europe. Her home country is Belarus which is heavily influenced by Russia.
Recently, Azarenka has battled some injuries, but she is still earning big money. She annoys a lot of tennis fans because of her absurdly loud grunts during gameplay. One can only imagine the sounds she makes in the bedroom, but that’s for a different article. In 2013, Azarenka finished #2 in the World Tennis Association’s rankings.
She has endorsements with some major players including: Nike, Red Bull and Citizen. Everyone knows a Nike deal is the cream of the crop when it comes to sports. Another professional Asian female athlete next…
3.Li Na – Tennis – $18.2 million
Li Na is the first Asian born professional women’s tennis player on the list. You must be thinking, where are all the Americans? Well, Americans are terrible at tennis on both the men’s and women’s tours. The Bryan brothers are the shining stars of American men’s tennis. They dominate doubles, but no one really watches doubles.
Na is from China and is one of their crown jewels. After winning the Australian Open, she received some serious endorsement deals. Nike even gave her a fat bonus for winning her second career title. In addition to her deal with Nike, she has deals with some big names including: Mercedes, Rolex and Samsung. When a person gets a deal with Rolex, he or she has made it to the top.
By winning her first Grand Slam title, she also became the first Asian to win one. Na should be on this list for years to come with her amazing talent.
2. Serena Williams – Tennis – $20.5 million
Williams is the most dominant female tennis player to ever play the game. Her incredible power and speed always outmatches her competition. Unlike other females on this list, Serena doesn’t make quite as much in endorsements. Maybe because she isn’t the blue-eyed, blonde model type. On the court, she makes the most. When healthy, she wins almost every Major tournament she participates in. Since America lacks tennis talent, Serena comes in to fill the gap.
She has endorsements with major brands including: Wilson, Nike and Gatorade. When Gatorade sponsors a player, it only chooses the best. Remember Michael Jordan? People still drink orange Gatorade because of him.
About half of Serena’s earnings come from her play on the court, and the other half come from endorsement deals. She doesn’t seem to slow down with age too because she is still winning the big-time tournaments every year. Most female tennis players probably can’t wait to see her retire.
1. Maria Sharapova – Tennis – $29 million
Sharapova came in to fill the gap left by Anna Kournikova for the hot blonde, female tennis player on tour. Sadly for her, she isn’t nearly as hot as Anna. Enrique Iglesias is Anna’s partner. Sharapova is still single. She did date Adam Levine back in 2005, but who hasn’t hooked up with Levine. If one thing is true, Sharapova is a much better tennis player than Kournikova ever was.
Even though Sharapova is a great tennis player, most of her earnings don’t come from playing the game. The Russian tennis star has the most premier endorsement deals in the female sporting world. Her long list of sponsorships include: Nike, Porsche, Tag Heuer, Evian, Head, Samsung Electronics and even Avon gave her a deal for a men’s and women’s line of perfume. Her agent is doing one heck of a job marketing her.
Considering her beauty, she also gets modeling gigs and commercial deals. She is easily the most marketable female athlete of her generation.