The world’s best athletes have plenty of opportunities to bank on their popularity. Besides lucrative sports contracts, most of them earn even more significant profits from heavy endorsement deals.
Although the MMA fighter Conor McGregor grasps the top of this list, most of the world’s highest-paid athletes come from another sport.
According to data presented by SafeBettingSites.com, NFL players top the ranking of the highest-paid athletes with combined earnings of over $837 million.
18 NFL Players Among the Highest-Paid Athletes, Basketball Follows with 13 Players on the List
In 2021, Conor McGregor racked up on and off-field earnings of around $180 million. However, the fighter was the only athlete from his discipline to make it into the Forbes` Top 50 highest-paid athletes list.
Statistics show the National Football League convincingly leads in this ranking with 18 NFL stars who made it into the top 50. However, Dak Prescott, as the highest-paid NFL player and fourth highest-paid athlete globally, earned much more than other NFL stars. In 2021, the famous quarterback racked up $107.5 million, 40% more than Tom Brady as the next NFL name on the list.
Basketball ranked as the second-highest-paid sport globally, with 13 players on the Forbes list. As the highest-paid basketball player and fifth highest-paid athlete globally, LeBron James made $96.5 million in on and off-field earnings this year. Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry followed with $75 million and $74.5 million, respectively.
Although soccer represents the third highest-paid sport with eight players who made it to the list, Lionel Messi ranked as the second-highest-paid athlete globally with $130 million in this year’s earnings.
Roger Federer, Naomi Osaka, Serena Williams, and Novak Djokovic were the only tennis players who made it to the top 50 list, with $90 million, $60 million, $41.5 million, and $34.5 million in earnings, respectively.
18 NFL Stars Earned Over $837 Million in 2021
As the highest-paid golf player and twelfth highest-paid athlete globally, Tiger Woods racked up $60 million in 2021, much more than Dustin Johnson and Phil Mickelson as the other two golf stars on this list.
The Formula 1 driver, Lewis Hamilton, made $82 million in on and off-field earnings in 2021, ranking eight among the highest-paid athletes. Max Verstappen, who arrived in Formula 1 at the age of 17 as the youngest driver ever to have competed in the series, was the second name from the auto racing world to enter the Forbes list with $42.5 million in this year’s earnings.
Statistics show the combined earnings of the 18 NFL stars from the Forbes list hit more than $837 million this year. Basketball players who made it to the list racked up $683.5 million in 2021. Soccer players followed with $527 million in combined earnings.
Fueled by a common history with innovation and motor racing at its core, led by visionary families whose values of entrepreneurship, precision and performance propelled them to the forefront of their respective industries, TAG Heuer and Porsche join forces to unveil an extensive partnership that will set a new standard for brand integration.
The Swiss luxury watchmaker, TAG Heuer, and the German sportscar manufacturer, Porsche, have announced their new partnership: an authentic alliance between two brands whose common DNA in motorsports and racing forges a holistic and long-term collaboration–ranging from competition to product development. A new watch, the TAG Heuer Carrera Porsche Chronograph, is unveiled as first celebration of the iconic brands.
TAG Heuer CEO Frédéric Arnault says that now is the time is right for his brand’s partnership with Porsche: “TAG Heuer and Porsche have common history and values, of course, but more importantly, we share an attitude. Like Porsche, we are disruptors at heart, always in pursuit of high performance. With this alliance, TAG Heuer and Porsche finally come together officially after decades of close encounters and will create unmatched experiences and products for customers and fans that are passionate about both our brands and what we stand for.”
“The strong friendship of our brand with TAG Heuer has existed for decades, and I am more than happy that we are now taking the next steps in the frame of a strategic partnership,” says Detlev von Platen, Member of the Executive Board for Sales and Marketing at Porsche AG. “We bring together what our customers love the most about both of us: authentic heritage, thrilling sports events, unique life experiences and the fulfilment of dreams. We both strive to create some unique, magic moments for our communities. We now look forward to doing it together.”
TAG Heuer and Porsche: Two histories–one passion
TAG Heuer and Porsche have a number of things in common, from their rich histories and reputations for innovation to cutting-edge technologies, powerful and independent mindsets, and a knack for excellence in design. And for over half a century, their stories have intersected in intricate, intriguing ways.
Of course, the argument can be made that certain similarities of heritage can be traced all the way back to when both companies were founded by self-taught entrepreneurs. Edouard Heuer and Ferdinand Porsche were visionaries and pioneers whose creations changed their chosen fields forever. Heuer was responsible for the first manufactured chronograph and Porsche invented an electric wheel hub motor. Both these accomplishments earned medals at World’s Fairs held in Paris 11 years apart. Heuer was honored in 1889 and Porsche presented the first Lohner-Porsche Electromobile with this innovation at the Expo in Paris in 1900.
A Beautiful Friendship Begins . . . and Flourishes
The true cornerstones of the new partnership, however, are descendants of the brands’ founding fathers. Ferdinand Porsche’s son, Ferdinand Anton Ernst, or “Ferry”, joined his father’s engineering office in 1931 at the age of 22. He later founded the car brand that bears the family name in 1948. Within a few years, the Porsche name would be associated with race track success all around the world–including a class win in the Carrera Panamericana race of 1954. In honor of its successful participation, Porsche calls its most powerful engine ‘Carrera’.
Edouard Heuer’s great-grandson Jack led his family’s company for decades. In 1963, he created the first Heuer Carrera chronograph, designed to let drivers tell the time at a glance in the heat of action.
This ground-breaking timepiece and Porsche’s most powerful Carrera engine united Porsche and Heuer – for the first time – in the spirit of the ‘Carrera’ (or ‘race’), which embodied ambition, speed and technical excellence.
Jack Heuer was also responsible for the Heuer Monaco, the first square-faced, water-resistant automatic chronograph watch. Its name evoked the Monaco Grand Prix as well as the Principality’s renowned Monte Carlo Rally, which Porsche won in three consecutive years, from 1968 to 1970, with its signature 911 model. Just as the Porsche 911 had done for automobiles, the Heuer Monaco–with its distinctive case, the blue metallic dial, the red seconds hand and the crown positioned on the left side of the case–broke with the familiar design codes of traditional watchmaking.
The Heuer Monaco’s innovations had come at a significant financial cost. As an alternative to an expensive advertising campaign, Jack Heuer further cemented his brand’s link to Porsche with a creative sponsorship arrangement with Fribourg, Switzerland-based racing driver and Porsche dealer Jo Siffert. In 2005, at the premiere of the film Jo Siffert: Live Fast – Die Young, Jack Heuer remembered the terms of their contract: “In exchange for CHF 25,000, he would put our logo on his car and suit. In addition, he could buy our watches at wholesale prices and resell them to his racing friends at a substantial profit. Which he did with great success because half of the F1 paddock was wearing Heuer watches by the end of the 1969 season!”
It was this connection that led Steve McQueen to wear the Heuer logo on his racing suit during the filming of Le Mans in 1970, in which he drove a Porsche 917. The enigmatic American actor said at the time, “I drive the same car as Jo Siffert, and I want to wear the same suit as him.”
There was another important, and more formal, link between Porsche and Heuer–or more precisely, TAG Heuer, the name assumed by the Swiss watch brand when it was sold to the TAG Group in the mid-1980s. Together, the brands developed and produced the TAG-Turbo engine that enabled the McLaren team to win three consecutive F1 world titles: with Niki Lauda in 1984, followed by Alain Prost in 1985 and 1986.
In 1999, the relationship grew even stronger–from the Porsche Carrera Cup and Supercup competitions, followed by the Endurance World Championship, and more was yet to come. TAG Heuer, as a founding partner of the Formula E championship, helped raise the profile of thrilling single seater races in electric cars. Porsche created its own Formula E team with TAG Heuer as title and timing partner in 2019, marking a starting point for an even more powerful and far-reaching collaboration. And in 2021, that “beautiful friendship” has become a holistic, official brand partnership, celebrated by a special-edition timepiece that proclaims proudly, “It was worth the wait!”.
New Sports Partnerships for 2021 and beyond
Along with the TAG Heuer Carrera Porsche Chronograph, which is introduced below in stunning detail, 2021 will feature a rich portfolio of joint projects that reflect TAG Heuer’s and Porsche’s shared commitment to speed and precision sports.
Motorsports: continuing the legacy
The foundations of the long, strong link between TAG Heuer and Porsche are world-class motorsports, and it is fitting that in the years to come, these thrilling competitions will be at the very heart of the new partnership.
The TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team made history in its debut season. It set a milestone at the opener in Diriyah (SA) in November 2019, when André Lotterer crossed the finish line in second place: that was the first time a rookie team finished on a podium in its first race since the maiden season in 2014/2015. In its second year, the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team will not only continue to attract new fans to a circuit that pits all-electric cars against each other, but also fight for the World Championship. Behind the wheel of Porsche’s latest all-electric racecar, the 99X Electric, will be drivers André Lotterer and his new teammate, Pascal Wehrlein.
Porsche has long distinguished itself in endurance events and together with TAG Heuer, its GT Team is well prepared for the coming FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC). The milestone year will also include series partnerships in ten editions of the worldwide one-make cup series, Porsche Carrera Cup.
In addition to physical competitions, TAG Heuer also engages in virtual racing by supporting the Porsche TAG Heuer Esports Supercup. With such a rich, common heritage on the track, TAG Heuer is naturally stepping in as global partner in Porsche’s ‘classic’ events and rallies as well.
One team, on the green and on the court
Beyond the broad-based partnership in motorsports and esports, TAG Heuer and Porsche also share a passion for two other popular activities, golf and tennis. Golf has been a focal point of the TAG Heuer Connected watch developments in recent years, with the TAG Heuer Golf app offering a best-in-class experience to hundreds of thousands of players. Porsche for its part is running its own golf activities like the Porsche Golf Cup, and is sponsor of the Porsche European Open golf tournament since 2015, both of which TAG Heuer will join.
Porsche’s support of tennis includes its own tournament, the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix in Stuttgart, of which TAG Heuer will be the Official Timing, Watch and Chronograph partner moving forward and which features some of the most talented women in the game. This comes of TAG Heuer’s already prominent on-court presence and via partnerships with world class tennis players. Joining forces in these sports as well was the obvious next step for both companies.
For the competitor in all of us
TAG Heuer and Porsche know that their clients and fans are not simply observers. They are everyday thrill seekers who are eager to take on new challenges and make their own marks. They believe that beautifully-designed objects should not be locked in a safe or stored in a garage but should be used, put to the test, and enjoyed. For precisely these enthusiasts, TAG Heuer and Porsche are creating unforgettable moments through the different Porsche experience formats.
Celebrating a partnership:
Carrera: an icon of a name that has been associated with TAG Heuer and Porsche for generations – so it was a natural choice for the first creative product collaboration. A tribute to the heritage of two legendary brands, both on and off the racetrack, the new chronograph offers a first glimpse at what they can achieve together.
The TAG Heuer Carrera Porsche Chronograph is an exquisite example of coordination, cooperation and collaboration. Based on TAG Heuer’s Carrera Sport Chronograph design, with its distinctive tachymeter scale engraved on the bezel, it introduces a number of features inspired by Porsche’s design essence. A compelling union of two icons of performance, quality, and innovation, this chronograph is a seamless blend of the Porsche and TAG Heuer universes, reflecting the excellence of both names without diluting the essence of either.
Porsche’s engraved inscription is visible on the bezel and the unmistakable font is also used for the indexes. The Porsche colors of red, black, and grey – which also recall historic Heuer models – are incorporated throughout the watch, and on clear display through the transparent crystal case back is the oscillating mass, which has been redesigned in affectionate tribute to Porsche’s celebrated steering wheel. It is printed with “Porsche” and “TAG Heuer”. The dial’s asphalt effect, created especially for this watch, perfectly expresses a passion for the road, while Arabic numerals suggest the numbers on the dashboard of fine Porsche sportscars.
This ground-breaking timepiece is presented either on a soft strap in luxurious calf leather and innovative stitching that echoes the Porsche interior, or on an interlocking bracelet reflecting streamlined racing design. At the heart of this stunning timepiece is the in-house Calibre Heuer 02 manufacture movement with an impressive 80-hour power reserve. The chronograph mechanism’s vertical clutch and column wheel demonstrate the brands’ unflinching demand for absolute precision.
Finally, the TAG Heuer Carrera Porsche Chronograph is a Special Edition watch and is delivered in bespoke packaging with colors and a style consistent with the remarkable watch inside. The black watch box features the logos of TAG Heuer and Porsche in white. Inside the box is a perfectly-sized black travel pouch with an unmistakably Porsche red interior.
The official partnership between TAG Heuer and Porsche may be on its starting line, but it has been built on a remarkable foundation: the shared heritage and the common interests of two of the world’s favorite and most dynamic luxury brands. It is a friendship reflecting the dreams and aspirations of visionary founding families. It is a true collaboration developed over decades on some of the world’s most challenging racetracks and on the wrists of drivers who were the very embodiment of Jack Heuer’s motto, “Time doesn’t stop. Why should we?”
Ceramic black tachymeter fixed bezel; Porsche inscription
Domed, beveled sapphire crystal with double anti-reflective treatment Steel crown at 3 o’clock with red
Steel screw-down sapphire case back with special engraving Water resistance: 100 meters
Grey asphalt dial 3 counters :
— 3 o’clock : black “azurage” minute chronograph counter ; rhodium plated polished hand red tip
— 6 o’clock : black “azurage” second chronograph counter ; rhodium plated polished hand
— 9 o’clock : black “azurage” hour chronograph counter ; rhodium plated polished hand red tip
Black gold plated applied indexes with white Super-LumiNova® Rhodium plated hour and minute hands with white Super-LumiNova® Rhodium plated central hand red tip
TAG Heuer applied logo 6 o’clock date
CARRERA HEUER 02 80 HOURS
Embossed black calf leather strap with hand stitching; calf skin black lining
Steel folding clasp with double safety push-buttons
About TAG Heuer
TAG Heuer, founded in 1860 by Edouard Heuer in the Jura Mountains of Switzerland, is a luxury watch brand that is part of LVMH Moët Hennessey Louis Vuitton SE (“LVMH”), the world’s leading luxury group. Based in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland and with four production sites, TAG Heuer has 1470 employees and is active in 139 countries. TAG Heuer products are available online on the watchmaker’s websitefor select countries and in 160 boutiques and 3,500 points of sale worldwide. The company is headed up by Frédéric Arnault, CEO of TAG Heuer.
For 160 years, TAG Heuer has demonstrated pure avant-garde watchmaking spirit and a commitment to innovation with revolutionary technologies that have included the oscillating pinion for mechanical stopwatches in 1887, the Mikrograph in 1916, the first automatic-winding chronograph movement – Calibre 11 – in 1969, the first luxury smartwatch in 2015, and the ground-breaking Isograph technology in 2019, made possible through a unique collaboration with the TAG Heuer Institute. Today, the brand’s core collection consists of three iconic families designed by Jack Heuer – TAG Heuer Carrera, Monaco and Autavia – and is rounded out with the contemporary Link, Aquaracer, Formula 1 and Connected lines.
Capturing TAG Heuer’s motto, “Don’t Crack Under Pressure”, are prominent partnerships and brand ambassadors that express the brand’s passion for action and high performance. These include the Formula E World Championship, of which the brand is a founding partner, the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E team, the Red Bull racing Formula 1 Team, the Formula 1 Monaco Grand Prix, the Endurance World Championships, the Indianapolis 500, legends Steve McQueen and Ayrton Senna, actors Chris Hemsworth and Patrick Dempsey, ATP next-generation tennis players Alex de Minaur, Frances Tiafoe, Denis Shapovalov and Felix Auger Aliassime, and surfer Kai Lenny, among others.
Red Bull Racing Honda × TAG Heuer
CHARGING ON TO 2024 WITH TAG HEUER
After five successful seasons together, Red Bull Racing Honda and TAG Heuer are pleased to announce a partnership extension until 2024, with the legendary Swiss watch manufacturer continuing as the Team’s Official Timekeeper.
The conclusion of the new agreement comes on the eve of the 2021 FIA Formula One World Championship and sees TAG Heuer branding continue across the cars and suits of race-winning Red Bull Racing Honda drivers Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez. Both headliners as well as the Team will also be sporting TAG Heuer wristwatches as they prepare to mount a title charge.
The partnership extension means the Swiss luxury brand will continue adding to its prestigious Formula One heritage that stretches back more than 50 years. TAG Heuer’s passion for motorsport not only includes its long-standing partnership with Red Bull Racing but also its ties to iconic races such as the Monaco Grand Prix.
Red Bull Racing Honda Team Principal, Christian Horner, said: “We are enormously proud to continue our longstanding and successful partnership with TAG Heuer, one of the most iconic names in the history of Grand Prix racing. Over the decades TAG Heuer has been associated with some of the true legends of our sport and we are delighted that Red Bull Racing continues to be part of that important heritage. In motorsport, timing is everything, not just in terms of the fractions of a second that separate the great from the good, but also in terms of the split-second decisions that can spell the difference between victory and defeat. TAG Heuer’s “Don’t Crack Under Pressure” spirit embodies the resilience and commitment required to get that timing right and we look forward to creating more race-winning moments with them in the coming years.”
Frédéric Arnault, CEO of TAG Heuer added: “TAG Heuer has outstanding heritage in Formula One, stretching back to the golden age of Grand Prix racing, and we are proud to continue that story with today’s extension of our relationship with Red Bull Racing Honda until the end of the 2024 season. Together with the Team, our mission is to continue to strive for ultimate precision and performance through beautifully engineered concepts that contribute to the remarkable history and wonderful mystique of motorsport.”
MAX VERSTAPPEN, Finish Position: WINNER, Start Position: 4th
“I’m so happy to win at the Red Bull Ring, and with so many Dutch fans here. It was also so unexpected, and that makes it even better. An amazing weekend. If you want to win a race this is the perfect place, in a Red Bull car at the Red Bull Ring. For the race I was very happy in general with how the car was behaving but I always just try to do my best race possible; if that is going to be first, second, third, it’s not in your hand. From my side I felt in control, I was driving to the best I could with the car I had and at the end we were struggling a little more than Ferrari with the tyre blistering but we managed to stay ahead. I knew that Daniel and Lewis had to pit again and I didn’t want that scenario so I was not driving to the full limit of the car but just managing everything. It was tougher than perhaps it looked but I just needed to be on top of my tyres. I’m very thankful to the engineers for making that strategy call under the VSC and full complements to the team for that pitstop, because that definitely made our race. The fans in the grandstand were great, so many orange t-shirts there. My focus was always on the track but for the last few laps I could look a little bit to my left and they were really cheering me on, it was amazing.”
DANIEL RICCIARDO, Finish Position: DNF, Start: 7th
“I’m obviously disappointed with how the day went. At one stage it was looking like a one-two, but in all honesty as soon as we put the softs on it didn’t feel like it gave me much. Even though we were able to get Kimi, I didn’t feel like I was able to pull away and then I saw the tyre was getting torn apart. So we had to pit and that put us out of contention for the podium. Then we had what I think was a broken exhaust which put me out of the race. I could feel something was wrong down the back straight before the last sector, so I mentioned it and then tried to do a procedure but the call came for me to stop. I’m happy for Red Bull today, the team, the brand, the people, and happy for Max who has so many fans here. I saw Mr Mateschitz earlier and I can imagine what he is feeling right now. Obviously it’s not my day but from the team’s point of view, for the Austrians and for Max it’s a big day for them, so I’m happy that some part of the team will be celebrating today. I don’t think I’ll celebrate too much for my birthday (today) but you know, maybe a cognac to get over these sniffles!”
CHRISTIAN HORNER, Team Principal: “An unbelievable feeling. To win in a Red Bull car at the Red Bull Ring is something I never imagined would happen this morning. All credit to Max today, he drove a very, very mature race, managing a very tricky situation with the tyres and he completed a very controlled drive to win our first Austrian Grand Prix. It was a great shame not to have Daniel up on the podium as well, after running for many laps in P2, but then his rear tyre started to overheat which caused a second pit stop. Shortly after that we began to see an exhaust crack that was causing gearbox damage, forcing his retirement. A special word to our pit-crew, again executing a faultless stacked pit stop on our route to victory, as they had done previously this year in China. I have to also applaud our entire staff back at the factory and their commitment to produce a competitive race car. The day belongs to them, to Max, to the team, to Red Bull and particularly to Mr Mateschitz who has given so much to modern Formula One. We are all delighted for him.”