October 2, 2009

Report: Woods becomes a billionaire

Professional golfer Tiger Woods has become the first athlete ever to reach the $1 billion mark in career earnings, Forbes Magazine reported.

The periodical said Woods cracked the plateau by winning the $10 million bonus at last week's PGA Tour Championship at Atlanta.

Woods, 33, has been the world's highest-paid athlete since 2002, despite the loss of his endorsement package for General Motors' Buick division.

He makes $3 million in appearances fees outside the united States.

Forbes estimated that he had earned about $895 million before the 2009 season started.

Retired NBA Hall of Famer Michael Jordan is second. Jordan continues to earn $45 million annually, mostly from endorsements for the Nike shoe and sports apparel company.

Forbes estimates that Jordan earned $800 million since his NBA career began in 1984.

Retired auto racing star Michael Schumacher is third with $700 million in career earnings.

Schumacher made a career-high $80 million in 2003.