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Babolat

Babolat

Babolat is a sporting goods manufacturer founded in 1875.

Babolat is a company founded in Lyon (France) in 1875. The oldest company specializing in the production of products for lawn tennis. The easily recognizable double line on the string surface of the racket is the company's trademark.

Babolat rackets are played by such world tennis stars as: Rafael Nadal, Andy Roddick, Kim Kleisters, Nadezhda Petrova, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Agnieszka Radwanska, Samantha Stosur, Li Na, Sara Errani, Igor Andreev, Evgeny Donskoy and others. Today, BABOLAT products are represented in more than 100 countries around the world, the company has diversified its offer and offers players a full set of tennis equipment: strings (natural and synthetic), rackets, balls, overgrips, sneakers, clothing and various accessories.

Since 2008, Babolat has been the No. 1 tennis brand in Russia.

Company history

The legendary history of Babolat began in 1875 in Lyon, France, when Pierre Babolat produced and patented the first tennis strings. It happened a year later, after Walter Wingfield registered "sphericism— - the rules of modern tennis.

Together with the "new Musketeers", the so-called four tennis players - Jean Borotra, Jacques Brugnon, Henri Cochet and Rene Lacoste, in 1925 Babolat company created the legendary VS vein strings. Natural (vein) Babolat strings are made from bovine intestines, more precisely from their upper muscle layer, the production itself is located in factories in the west of France.

In 1927, the year was the finest hour for French tennis and natural strings VS - the "new Musketeers" and the first star of women's tennis - Susan Lenglen, together collected 20 Grand Slam titles and 6 Davis Cups.

In order to meet the growing demand of players for Babolat strings, Paul Babolya organized his international distribution network in 1950.

By 1955, Babolat, in addition to natural strings, began producing synthetic Elascord strings. A few years later, the company releases Babol, an innovation aimed at protecting natural strings and their durability. The process was so successful that soon people were not "covering Babol strings", they were "babolizing" their strings.

With improvements and changes, natural VS strings have reached our days.Donald Budge, Rodney Laver, John Newcomb, Bjorn Borg, Janik Noah, Mats Wilander, Boris Becker, Pete Sampras, Evgeny Kafelnikov, Kim Kleisters, Dinara Safina, Andy Roddick - all of them won using Babolat string strings.

To service the rackets, in 1975, Babolat patented one of the first electronic string tensioning machines. Later, the "Competitions" department appeared to the company, which consisted of a team of experienced stringers who accompany Babolat players all year round at all tournaments in the world.

In 1981, the Babolat logo was introduced - "double line", which is applied to the string surface of the racket. Until now, this logo is the company's trademark.

Being a world leader in the production of tennis strings, having vast experience and authority in the world of tennis, in 1994 Paul Babolya insisted on launching a line of tennis rackets.

Babolat developed one of its first models of rackets — Pure Drive, which later became legendary. She was the antipode of popular models of that time and seemed "amateur" to many. It weighed "only" 300 gr., with a rim width of 25 mm and a rim area of 645 cm2, it is worth adding that the number of strings at the same time was 16 vertical and 19 horizontal, with a "standard" of 18 ×20 for a smaller area.

After 4 years, Carlos Moya wins Roland Garros with a Pure Drive racket and becomes the first racket of the world (March 1999).

The Pure Drive racket has become a real symbol of an entire era in tennis. The apotheosis was November 2003 - Andy Roddick and Kim Kleisters simultaneously took 1st place in the men's and women's ratings, with a Pure Drive racket.At the moment, Pure Drive is a kind of "classic" — all manufacturers have analogues of this model

Babolat company, in parallel with tennis rackets, in 1995 began the production of badminton rackets.

In 1999, Babolat reasserts itself as a true innovative leader. Using its experience as a leading string manufacturer, the company has been conducting special research for 2 years to study the interaction of the racket rim and strings on impact. As a result, a system appears that was named WOOFER by analogy with the operation of speakers of sound systems. The system consists of special pistons made of high-tech polymer, on which the strings "sit". When hit, the ball exerts pressure on the strings, which in turn put pressure on the pistons and compress them. As a result, the ball "lingers" on the strings for 25% more time - this gives the player an advantage in controlling the ball. In the future, pistons have the opposite effect, causing a springboard effect, which increases the impact force by 10%. The impact involves not only the strings in contact with the ball, but also neighboring ones, which also increases the power and playing spot of the racket.

Some manufacturers have made attempts to introduce similar technologies, but none of them has taken root in the tennis world. WOOFER technology is the only system of its kind that has received worldwide recognition and development — most manufacturers have repeated it, and now have similar developments.

In 2001, Babolat used Nano Carbon in the design of its rackets - this material is used at the "critical" points of the racket — those places where it experiences the greatest overload upon impact. The use of this material made it possible to significantly increase the rigidity of the rim structure, the transformation of the impact energy from the handle to the head of the racket and, consequently, the power.

In the following years, Babolat expanded its production, so in 2001 a line for the production of tennis balls was launched, and in 2003 Babolat, together with Michelin, produced the first collection of specialized tennis shoes and clothing.

In 2004, after long-term research and experiments with the rim of the racket, AERO technology appeared. This technology is a special shape of the rim section, which reduces the air resistance when swinging and hitting, thereby giving the player an advantage in speed. The uniqueness of AERO technology is also in the fact that the company managed to combine aerodynamics with other important properties of the racket - power and control. Rafael Nadal takes the racket for his "armament".

In 2006, Babolat had its say in the "anti-vibration campaign". All the systems used before did not take into account a very important circumstance. The "vibrations" of the rim that occur after impact occur at different frequencies. We used to call low-frequency vibrations the feeling of the ball - necessary for every racket. High-frequency vibrations, on the contrary, caused unpleasant, often painful sensations. Babolat has set itself the task of separating the "necessary" vibrations from the "unnecessary" ones. As a result of long research, a special filter was created and implanted into the handle of the racket, which distinguishes between useful and harmful vibrations and extinguishes the latter. The technology is called CORTEX.

The next stage of the relationship with Michelin, in 2007, was the launch of a high-tech shoe model- Impulse. The Impulse becomes Andy Roddick's exclusive shoe. In the same year, Babolat signs a ten-year contract with Rafael Nadal, who wins Roland Garros for the third time in a row.

In 2008, a new series of badminton rackets Xfeel for professional players is launched.

In 2009, Babolat introduces the revolutionary GT technology - the name consists of the first letters GRAPHITE and TUNGSTEN. Tungsten threads are "woven" into a graphite matrix — the resulting material is optimal for creating a racket rim. This composition provides rigidity and strength of the material, which makes it possible to make a light and durable frame and provide excellent control and power. It took more than 2 years to create the material and optimize its properties. In 2009, this technology was introduced into the Pure racket series (Pure Drive, Pure Drive Roddick, Pure Drive 107, Pure Drive Lite and Pure Storm).

Having proven itself well and received a lot of positive feedback, Babolat company decides to introduce this technology into the Aero racket series. As a result, the stability of the rim of the racket increases upon impact, which leads to an even greater increase in speed, power and rotation.

On May 24, 2012, Babolat presented the first plug-in racket "Babolat Play" on the courts of Roland Garros and tested its first prototype together with the leading players - Kim Clijsters, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Rafael Nadal and Li Na.

The Babolat Play racket contains special sensors that record the data stream coming from the rim and strings and accumulate them in the built-in chip. With the help of a special program, the player has the opportunity to get generalized data about his game, such as the speed and intensity of strokes, the degree of rotation, "correctness" (strikes with the center or not the center of the string surface) on his laptop, tablet, smartphone.

On December 12, 2012, Babolat updated its logo. The previous logo was introduced by the company in 2002. Since January 1, 2013, Babolat team players have applied a new logo to the string surface of the racket.

On August 15, 2014, the first plug-in Babolat Play racket will be presented in Russia.

Timeline

Patents

Further Resources

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