Over the last twelve months, Carlos Alcaraz has been making waves on the ATP Tour, with Stefanos Tsitsipas claiming he had ‘never seen someone hit the ball so hard.'
The Spaniard recently won his maiden Masters 1000 title in Miami, which added to the hype, leading to many pundits calling him the next multiple Grand Slam winner.
Even with talent and work ethic to boot, a man is only as good as his tools, so what racket does he use to hit with a considerable velocity of both wings? Let's take a look.
What Racket Does Alcaraz Use?
Alcaraz currently uses the Babolat Pure Aero VS, one of the lesser-known and lesser-used rackets in the French firm's Pure Aero lineup.
Only a few players on tour use this stick, with Holger Rune and Felix Auger-Aliassime the other significant players taking to the court with it.
However, the Canadian endorses the Pure Aero and uses those cosmetics instead, disguising it.
The Pure Aero VS started life back in 2007 as the Aero Storm (currently used by Jack Sock, who also uses Pure Aero cosmetics), and this latest model is a 98 square inch racket with a 16×20 string pattern, a very controlled setup.
In stock form, it's designed for aggressive baseline players who want something that lets them swing super hard/fast, with pinpoint accuracy. Something Alcaraz does on both wings.
What Specification is Alcaraz's Racket?
Aside from using a 4 1/4 (L2) grip size, the rest of Alcaraz's exact specifications are not yet known.
It was rumoured via the Talk Tennis forums his specs at the 2021 US Open were a swing weight of 315, a static strung weight of 330g and a balance of 32.4cm.
However, these are unconfirmed, and a swing weight of 315 is likely too low (at strung specs) anyway. Once we get the specs from a stringer or if Alcaraz reveals them himself, I will post them here.
|Head Size||98 in²|
|String Pattern||16 x 20|
|Grip Style||Leather Grip|
|Grip Size||4 1/2″ (L4) + Overgrip|
What String Setup Does Alcaraz Use?
Alcaraz has his cross strings slightly looser; this is done to aid spin potential.
RPM Blast is a shaped polyester string designed to provide plenty of spin potential. It ranks highly on the stiffness scale and is not a string for beginners.
Overall this is not an arm friendly setup, and Alcaraz has already had a few elbow problems, using PRP injections before the 2021 hard court swing.
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Can You Buy Alcaraz's Racket?
You can see the specs of the retail racket below:
|Head Size||98 in / 632.26 cm|
|Length||27in / 68.58cm|
|Strung Weight||11.3oz / 320g|
|Balance||12.75in / 32.39cm / 6 pts HL|
|Beam Width||21mm / 23mm / 22mm|
|Racquet Colors||Yellow/Metallic Silver|
|Grip Type||Babolat Syntec Pro|
|String Pattern||16 Mains / 20 Crosses|
|String Tension||50-59 pounds|
These specs put the Pure Aero VS in the spec range for a ‘players' racket, but it's not at an unmanageable weight or swing weight for higher intermediate to advanced players.
To get your hands on an actual racket used by Alcaraz, you'll have to see if one of his rackets comes up for sale at the pro stock retailers or via an auction.
What do you think of Alcaraz's racket? Does it make sense that he wields the Babolat Pure Aero VS as his weapon of choice? Let me know in the comments.