What does it mean to win a “Gold Slam”? It means a senior player has won all four Category I USTA National Championships in a calendar year: Clay, Hard, Indoor Hard and Grass in singles or doubles. It’s the senior equivalent of a Grand Slam (that accomplishment Serena was going for in NY).
Tina Karwasky actually completed her Gold Slam (her fourth in as many years, in singles) in August when she won the 60 Indoors. Think about it…no off days, no losses…playing on all those surfaces, from NY to Alabama to California…for four years. Dodo Cheney would be proud.
Susan Wright has been just as dominant in 55 doubles, and won her second straight Gold Slam in 55 doubles at Chamisal, and third in four years…and she won it this year with four different partners this year (Carolyn Nichols, Tracey Thompson, Karwasky and Kathy Vick). She hasn’t lost in 55 doubles at a Category I in the past 4 years, but missed one national in order to attend her daughter’s graduation (family first). The final of three of the four tournaments went to three sets.
Jane Lutz won both the singles and doubles gold slams in the 85s for the second year in a row (with Rita Price), beating Rita in the final at Chamisal in straight sets. She’s only lost one singles match in the 85s since entering the division and one doubles…truly dominating.
Betty Wachob won her first gold slam, in 70 singles, by beating Carolann Castell in three sets in the indoor singles (and she won the doubles with Castell too).
Burnett Herrick dominated the 80s this year, winning all four singles and the three doubles held in the 80s. She also won the world singles and doubles and team in Croatia…what a year for the 79 year old (her birthday is at the end of December)!
Cathie Hall won the Indoor and Hard singles in the 90s.
There are still some men who are in the gold slam hunt, but the women’s Cat I, other than the 30s are finished.