Sharapova, Williams Top List of Highest-Paid Female Athletes

Mike Schultz | Updated Oct 27, 2017


Heading into the 2015 U.S. Open as the -138 favorite, Serena Williams is on a roll of historic proportions, winning the past four Grand Slam events to complete the “Serena Slam” for the second time in her career. In her 41 matches this year, she has only lost once. Over the course of the first seven months of the year, she’s banked $9.1 million in prize money, which is more than all but 35 tennis players have made over the entirely of their careers.

Despite these brilliant successes and accomplishments, Williams takes a back seat to rival Maria Sharapova when comparing bank accounts. Between June 2014 and June 2015, Williams earned $24.6 million from prize money and endorsements, while Sharapova accrued $29.7 million, making her the world’s highest-paid female athlete for the 11th straight year.

Sharapova and Williams appear to be in another league among professional women athletes, as Danish tennis pro Caroline Wozniacki is ranked third with earnings of $14.6 million, a $10 million difference from Williams.

Nascar’s Danica Patrick ranked no. 4 on the list, earning $13.9 million despite never truly seeing success on the race track. Her main sponsor, GoDaddy, announced they would no longer be involved with Nascar after the 2015 season, but Patrick is expected to return with new sponsors in 2016.

A newcomer to the top 10 list of of highest paid women athletes is UFC star Ronda Rousey. At no. 8 on the list, Rousey has earned an estimated $6.5 million and has dominated in the ring as well. The mixed martial arts odds favorite and undefeated champion has had an incredible breakout year, landing roles in three movies over the last year, publishing a best-selling autobiography, and gracing the cover of Sports Illustrated magazine.

Here’s the full list of the top 10 highest-paid women athletes:

1. Maria Sharipova, Tennis – $29.7 million 2. Serena Williams, Tennis – $24.6 million 3. Caroline Wozniacki, Tennis – $14.6 million 4.Danica Patrick, Nascar – $13.9 million 5. Ana Ivanovic, Tennis – $8.3 million 6.Petra Kvitova, Tennis – $7.7 million 7.Simona Halep, Tennis – $6.8 million 8. Rhonda Rousey, UFC – $6.5 million 9. Stacy Lewis, Golf – $6.4 million 10. Agnieszka Radwanska, Tennis – $6 million