Playing for a Good Cause

Click below to see Ben’s interview with Tracy Austin.

Tracy Austin has an undeniable passion for tennis. In the annual Tracy Austin Doubles Tennis Tournament in Palos Verdes, California, she combines her love of the game with family and community.

This year, the tournament took place from July 21 through July 23. Named for the two-time U.S. Open champion and Palos Verdes resident, the event raises money for the preservation of local parks, trails, and open spaces. 

“I was very excited to have my name on a doubles tournament in a community that I loved and appreciated growing up in,” Austin said.

The tournament was founded when Austin, already a tennis star, was just 15. Her involvement has deepened over the past 39 years as her passion for tennis has melded with her passion for family and community.

Kid Reporter Ben Jorgensen with Tracy Austin at the Jack Kramer Club in Palos Verdes, CA, home of the Tracy Austin Doubles Tournament.

Ben with Tracy Austin at the Jack Kramer Club in Palos Verdes, California, home of the Tracy Austin Doubles Tennis Tournament.


Austin was the youngest tennis player to attain many of the sport’s biggest prizes. At 14, she reached the quarterfinals of the U.S. Open and, at 16, she won it. At 18, she won it again and became the youngest player in history to be ranked No. 1.

The tournament is unique because are no age brackets. Doubles partners are often family members. “It’s really a pleasure to see young kids starting in the D [lowest] division, playing with their mom or their dad or their brother,” Austin said, “and then getting better every year and moving up.”

Tournament Director Bob Krueger agrees. “The most rewarding part is having young kids play with their parents,” he said. “Tracy’s idea behind the whole tournament is that it’s always about the children and their families.” 

Austin’s own family has participated for years. This year, her husband, Scott Holt, and son Sean joined in the fun.

One of Austin’s favorite memories is of a grandfather who flew into California to partner with his granddaughter. They won the tournament.

“That’s a special moment that they’ll both remember, and actually the family will remember, always,” Austin said. “If I were asked what this tournament represents, it’s about community, and it’s about family, and I like that.”