Maria Sharapova.Lintao Zhang/Getty
Forbes has released its list of the 10 highest-paid women in sports, and it shows one clear thing — tennis remains the best-paying outlet for female athletes.
The list was compiled and ranked according to prize earnings in sport, in addition to sponsorship revenue, from June 2017 to June 2018.
Eight tennis players make up the list, with car racing and badminton the two outliers.
Many of the featured athletes will be fully focused on the upcoming US Open women’s title, a championship which will boost the winner’s earnings by a whopping $3.8 million — the richest prize in tennis history, according to Forbes.
But, even before the tournament gets underway, each athlete on this list has already made millions.
Keep scrolling to see the 10 highest-paid female athletes in 2018, ranked in ascending order.
10. Three-time Grand Slam tennis champion Angelique Kerber collected $7 million.
Kerber reached the semifinal of the 2018 Australian Open, regaining form she had lost the previous year.
Her prize money for the period from June 2017 to June 2018 totalled $3 million, and because of deals with Porsche, Rolex, and SAP, she was able to bank a further $4 million.
9. Danica Patrick, the most successful female racing driver of all time, made $7.5 million.
Danica Patrick is the most famous women’s racing driver in the world, and called time on a wildly successful sports career in May.
She now has a clothes label, Warrior, and a fitness book. Forbes says she made $3 million from the Nascar season last year, and $4.5 million through sponsors.
8. Current world number one women’s tennis player Simona Halep earned $7.7 million.
Simona Halep, the best women’s tennis player in the world according to the WTA, made most of her money ($6.2 million) through sport.
Her Adidas deal expired in 2017, so she did not receive as much as other athletes from sponsorships. She signed a new deal with Nike earlier this year.
7. Indian badminton sensation P.V. Sindhu brought home $8.5 million.
P.V. Sindhu made the least out of the althetes on the list in terms of prize money, but commanded an $8 million paycheck because of deals with Nokia, Panasonic, Reckitt- Benckiser, and eight other brands.
6. American tennis veteran Venus Williams banked an impressive $10.2 million.
Over the last 18 months, Williams reached the final of WTA Finals, played her 1000th match, and made $4.2 million in prize money from June 2017 to June 2018.
The rest of her windfall was through endorsements. She also makes approximately $100,000 every time she is hired on the speaking circuit, according to Forbes.
5. Maria Sharapova, one of the most famous female athletes on the planet, made $10.5 million.
Maria Sharapova did not win one of the big prizes in tennis this year or last, which explains why she only made $1 million from sport.
She made $9.5 million endorsing the likes of Nike, Porsche, and Evian, though.
4: Two-time Grand Slam tennis champion Garbiñe Muguruza collected $11 million.
Garbiñe Muguruza won Wimbledon last year which helped boost her earnings for the one-year period to $5.5 million.
However, she made just as much money because of sponsorship deals with renowned brands like Beats by Dre and Rolex.
3. Coming-of-age tennis star Sloane Stephens scooped $11.2 million.
Sloane Stephens won her first major late last year, the 2017 US Open, and won $5.7 million in total prize money from June 2017 to June 2018.
In that same time she almost doubled her money from endorsements, bringing in $5.5 million because of deals with Nike, Mercedes-Benz, Colgate, and others.
2. Former world number one women’s tennis player Caroline Wozniacki earned $13 million.
Caroline Wozniacki made a career-best performance at the 2018 Australian Open as she won her first ever Grand Slam singles title.
The 28-year-old made $7 million in prize money and $6 million in endorsements from sponsorships that include Adidas and Rolex.
1. 23-time Grand Slam tennis champion Serena Williams netted $18.1 million.
Serena Williams only hauled in $62,000 in winnings from June 2017 to June 2018 as she was away from the game while pregnant, then gave birth to her daughter Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr.
However, she has many blue-chip sponsors including Nike, Audemars Piguet, Gatorade, and Beats by Dre, and made an astonishing $18 million in endorsements. Not bad work if you can get it.