2018 Wilson Pro Staff RF97 Autograph Review – When Roger Federer returns to action for the grass court season, he will debut his new racket, the latest evolution of the legendary Wilson Pro Staff RF97 Autograph. His new frame features a refreshed paint job, adding glossy white to compliment the matte black finish. Carrying over many of the same characteristics in appearance and design of its predecessor, the new Pro Staff RF97 Autograph is a timeless, elegant racket inspired by Federer himself, who helped co-design the frame with Wilson. The 36-year-old Swiss’ intention on changes to the racket were to “make it minimal, but make it significant.”
There are no specifications written anywhere on the new black and white model of the new of the Swiss maestro’s new racket, but the frame maintains the same classic control and feel of the Pro Staff RF97 line, which debuted in 2014. The Pro Staff has been the weapon of choice of the 20-time grand slam champion throughout his entire career, and in his own words to describe his latest racket, “the tuxedo finally got its shirt.”
In my play test of Federer’s new Wilson Pro Staff RF97 Autograph black and white model, everything feels the same. All of the characteristics and qualities I have come to expect from the high quality feel of a Pro Staff are there. The specifications will be confirmed when officially released by Wilson Tennis, but in feeling identical to the previous all-black and red and black models, this 16 x 19 string pattern racket, when strung, weighs about 12.6 ounces, has a 9 points headlight strung balance and 335 swingweight. Retaining a 21.5mm beam, the racket composition is braided graphite with kevlar, meant for players with full, fast strokes. The Pro Staff RF97 Autograph is the easiest Pro Staff yet to maneuver for any shot on court, and one of the finest crafted players’ rackets ever made.
Roger Federer’s new Wilson Pro Staff RF97 Autograph is available July 1, 2018, and he will start playing with the new racket at the Mercedes Cup grass court tournament in Stuttgart, Germany, on June 10.
2018 Wilson Pro Staff RF97 Autograph Review
Note: Pros often customize the racket they use. Racket specifications on endorsed consumer models may vary from the models used by pros for match-play.