Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Tracy Austin: I Was a Teenage Avon Lady

Besides all the hot men in my mom's old Avon catalogs, 1981 was also the year my favorite tennis player of the era -- Tracy Austin, then just 18 -- was on the payroll hawking her signature line of wares for America's favorite multi-level marketer. Venus and Serena Williams would later follow in her footsteps -- or were they drag queens doing Venus and Serena? -- and Jennifer Capriati would endorse Oil of Olay -- at age 14!! But Tracy's Avon campaign was by far the best a gal on tour ever looked in her "civilian" clothes. I'm still kicking myself for not getting a "pic with" when I met her that summer in Rancho Bernardo, California, during the Wells Fargo tournament leading into her second U.S. Open victory, where she defeated Martina Navratilova in a thrilling third-set tiebreaker. Little did we know, it would be the end of a great tennis career -- although her popularity as a corporate pitchwoman, for products like Canon, 7Up, Pony sneakers, Gunze apparel and her own line of Spalding tennis rackets, continued for a number of years, especially in Asia.




2 comments:

Allen said...

I produced an MSG fitness special with her back in like '94. She was a total pro and a total pleasure.

Kenneth Walsh said...

@Allen: PLEASE elaborate. E-mail me with details, dying to hear more!

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