Tiger Woods is back on top of the world – in more ways than one.

The iconic golfer returned this year to the world No 1 spot he had held for so long until his self-imposed exile from the game December 2009.

And now the 37-year-old is back at the top of Forbes’ annual list of the world’s 100 highest paid athletes.

 
Show me the money: Woods is back at the top of the Forbes list

Show me the money: Woods is back at the top of the Forbes list

 
Power year: Woods, seen at left in his trademark red shirt at a tournament in Ohio last weekend, has attended a number of events (including the Met Ball at right) with his new girlfriend Olympic skier Lindsey Vonn
Power year: Woods, seen at left in his trademark red shirt at a tournament in Ohio last weekend, has attended a number of events (including the Met Ball at right) with his new girlfriend Olympic skier Lindsey Vonn
 

Power year: Woods, seen at left in his trademark red shirt at a tournament in Ohio last weekend, has attended a number of events (including the Met Ball at right) with his new girlfriend Olympic skier Lindsey Vonn

 

The American has earned $78.1million in the last year. The vast majority of which came from endorsement deals worth $65million and the remaining $13.1million came from winnings.

Woods was top of the list for 11 consecutive years until 2012, when he was usurped by Swiss tennis star Roger Federer.

This has been a year of rehabilitation for Woods, who has come out from seemingly self-imposed hiding after the fallout from his multiple extramarital affairs surfaced.

 
Silver and bronze: Tennis star Roger Federer came in second with $71.5million and basketball legend Kobe Bryant made $61.9million
Silver and bronze: Tennis star Roger Federer came in second with $71.5million and basketball legend Kobe Bryant made $61.9million
 

Silver and bronze: Tennis star Roger Federer came in second with $71.5million and basketball legend Kobe Bryant made $61.9million

 

 
Meeting of the money makers: LeBron James went over to greet David Beckham after the soccer star watched the Miami Heat's game on June 3. James made $59.8million and Beckham made $47.2million

Meeting of the money makers: LeBron James went over to greet David Beckham after the soccer star watched the Miami Heat’s game on June 3. James made $59.8million and Beckham made $47.2million, making him the highest-earning Brit on the Forbes list in 8th place

Now he is very publicly dating Olympic skier Lindsey Vonn, and the two have attended a number of red carpet events together including the annual ball at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Though Vonn is wealthy in her own right from her endorsement deals following Olympic medals, she did not make the cut of Forbes’ top 100 athletes.

There were only three women who did actually make the list. Though Maria Sharapova is currently ranked number two to Serena Williams in the tennis world, Sharapova beat her by a wide margin in the Forbes list as the Russian blonde came in 22nd with $29million while the younger Williams sister ranked 68th with $20.5million. 

While Federer may have had his money crown taken back by Tiger, he still came in second place over all on the Forbes list, earning $71.5million.

 
On and off the court: Maria Sharapova is ranked second in tennis to Serena Williams, but Sharapova made $8.5million more than the number 1 champ last year
On and off the court: Maria Sharapova is ranked second in tennis to Serena Williams, but Sharapova made $8.5million more than the number 1 champ last year
 

On and off the court: Maria Sharapova is ranked second in tennis to Serena Williams, but Sharapova made $8.5million more than the number 1 champ last year

The next four spots are held by Americans who are at the top of their fields: Kobe Bryant and LeBron James came in third and fourth with $61.9million and $59.8million respectively.

The basketball stars are following closely by two football stars: Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers with $51million and $49million respectively.

 

Baseball is the most represented sport on the list with 27 stars present. There are athletes from 11 different sports represented, hailing from 23 different countries.

The highest represent Brit on the list is David Beckham in eighth, having taken home $47.2million last year.

The former England captain is also the highest placed footballer, just ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo in ninth and Lionel Messi in 10th.

 

The World’s Top 10 Highest-Paid Athletes:

 

Rank Athlete    Sport Total ($m) Salary/winnings ($m) Endorsements ($m)

1

Tiger Woods

Golf

78.1

13.1

65.0

2

Roger Federer

Tennis

71.5

6.5

65.0

3

Kobe Bryant

Basketball

61.9

27.9

34.0

4

LeBron James

Basketball

59.8

17.8

42.0

5

Drew Brees

American Football

51.0

40.0

11.0

6

Aaron Rodgers

American Football

49.0

43.0

6.0

7

Phil Mickelson

Golf

48.7

4.7

44.0

8

David Beckham

Football

47.2

5.2

42.0

9

Cristiano Ronaldo

Football

44.0

23.0

21.0

10

Lionel Messi

Football

41.3

20.3

21.0

 

Advertisements