Baby Elephant has arrived in Tokyo and being run ragged with promotion activities for her Japanese racquet sponsor, Yonex:
The second half of the day was very busy. I did an interview for one of the main TV stations in Japan, then I took part in a kids’ clinic with my racket sponsor Yonex.
I was touched that some of the children wished me “good luck” in the tournament in English. I feel very comfortable in Japan, because everyone is so friendly and supportive. The Japanese are fantastic people – so easy to get along with.
Then after the hitting session, which was at a big hotel complex, I went to a cocktail party and met some Yonex customers. They were also so welcoming.
There was a presentation showing pictures from my childhood, and a special surprise message from Monica Seles. It was touching.
Talking of rackets, I have a new one! Yonex have made a slightly lighter racket for me, which helps because I can get a little more head speed. It’s a new design too, which I really like.
According to the Yonex website the new racquet is the RQiS 1 Tour XL, which will be released at the end of September.
Boo. I miss the red and black. The new design is blue and lime (chosen by Ana), same 95 inch head but it looks to be 30 grams lighter. No word on the balance yet, which is always my favorite spec. And yes, Ana will be using the new racquet at the PPO this week.
A new racquet that will allow her to generate even more headspeed? That's frightening. I have the RQiS 1 (I superstitiously bought it 15 minutes before the Indian Wells final -- it worked!) and I have to say that stick is frickin heavy AND head light. I've always wondered how Ana was able to generate the power and control from that racquet. Actually, the control is easy but there is zero power in that racquet. The power has to be 100% generated by the player, which to me, was always a testament to Ana's strength and mechanics. Compared to the racquets used by other tour players the RQiS 1 is quite the anomaly. It's the heaviest(11.9 oz) and most head light (9 pts) of any racquet used by the other top 10 WTA tour players (this is based on factory specs of course).