CLAREMONT, Calif., (Sept. 12, 2016) – The Claremont USTA Pro Classic will celebrate its 21st year, and once again will feature some of the rising stars in pro tennis.
The first of three consecutive $10,000 USTA Pro Circuit hard-court men’s events held in Southern California following the US Open, the Pro Classic is run by tournament director Barry Friedman and USTA Tour Supervisor Peter Kasavage.
Qualifying concludes on Monday with main draw singles and doubles matches starting on Tuesday. The doubles final is scheduled for Friday, the singles semifinals Saturday and the final on Sunday.
Former LMFAO frontman and musical artist Redfoo has been granted a doubles wild card into the tournament along with his partner Chris Wettengel, a former University of Minnesota player who currently resides in Las Vegas.
Germany’s Jan Choinski will be among the top-seeded players, and is currently ranked No. 457 in the ATP World Tour rankings. Former UCLA player Clay Thompson is behind him and, hovering just inside the world Top 500. Former Pepperdine star Sebastian Fanselow is expected to earn a top eight seeding, as will young Americans Christian Harrison and Alexios Halebian.
Harrison is the younger brother of former Top 50 player Ryan Harrison. Harrison made his Grand Slam main draw debut by qualifying for the 2016 US Open. He also won his first USTA Pro Circuit singles title this summer at the $25,000 Futures in Champaign, Ill. Thompson, who graduated from UCLA in 2014, won his first ITF-level singles title, in Mexico, last year and reached the quarterfinals or better at three consecutive USTA Pro Circuit events in July of 2015.
Halebian is a former top junior and two-time doubles champion on the ITF Pro Circuit from Glendale. Halebian reached the singles quarterfinals of the 2011 junior US Open and climbed as high as No. 24 in the ITF World Junior Rankings.
Notable Americans in qualifying include Ty Trombetta, former USC player Connor Farren, UCLA’s Martin Redlicki and Max Cressy, Stanford’s Michael Genender and top SoCal junior Jacob Brumm.
Redfoo will be making his Pro Circuit debut. A passionate tennis player and the son of Motown Records Berry Gordy, Redfoo’s legal name is Stefan Gordy and he grew up playing the Southern California junior circuit. He has competed in two US Open National Playoff Opens, and has played in The Ojai Tennis Tournament qualifying tournament.
“I just love to compete, and I love to play this game,” said Redfoo. “My overall game has really improved and I’m much more consistent now. It’s going to be fun to play in my first professional event.”
Redfoo met Wettengel in Las Vegas after a show, and the two became hitting partners and friends. Both were in New York this weekend for the US Open. They skipped out on a chance to watch the women’s singles final to get in some more doubles drills at the John McEnroe Academy in Manhattan.
“I thought I was the most passionate person I knew when it came to tennis, then I met Redfoo,” said Wettengel, a former University of Minnesota player who runs a tennis academy in Las Vegas called Wettennis. “This isn’t going to be an exhibition. We hope to be playing on Wednesday and Thursday and Friday.”
Redfoo is best known as part of the musical duo LMFAO, whose hit “Party Rock Anthem” and “Sexy and I Know It” dominated the music charts. Redfoo also sponsored a USTA Pro Circuit
women’s event in 2012 and 2013, titled “The Party Rock Open” after his Party Rock clothing line.
For more information, check on the web at:www.procircuit.usta.com, www.claremontclub.com; Facebook: www.facebook.com/pages/The-Claremont-Club/236147226396