Originally Posted by TCF
danny, the red clay is totally different than Har Tru. Red clay makes your legs burn, red clay makes the balls heavy. Its the mental and physical toughness developed from kids playing interclubs against grown men, on red clay, week after week. Playing match after match with your legs burning and lifting heavy balls over and over again develops a level of toughness.
Its like when you hear of NFL legends who trained by running in sand.
The advantage they would have at the French and any other clays is only a small part of it. The rest is the toughness required to train and play tournaments on the red clay as juniors.
Its not the only factor. But if you had 2 equally talented kids, one raised on hards and one raised on red clay, I would bet on the red clay guy.
I played my first and only match on red clay in Germany this past summer. I've been playing almost all my matches on Har-Tru the last 5 years or so. The red clay is SOOOOOOO much slower than Har-Tru. The difference between the speed of a hard court and Har-Tru is not nearly as big as the difference between red clay and Har-Tru.