Las Vegas is a legitimate sports town with bonafide superstars. Some of these stars are homegrown heroes, others came to play for a local team. Either way, we love them. Here are the five best female athletes in Las Vegas!
1. Michele Abbate: professional driver
Michele Abbate had the desire to go fast at a very young age and followed that to great heights. Abbate honed her skills for years, competing in sanctioned races and eventually winning a podium spot in her first National event. This accomplishment opened the floodgates for more to come.
She later spent her efforts on time attack trials while also competing in the Inex Legends series. Here she developed road course skills that would help her to many future victories. Fast forward to 2014 and she co-owned a team with her fiance called GRR. They competed as a part of the Touring car championship.
The duo would go on to win the championship, even though they lost their primary sponsor. The team raised over $13,000 to keep racing that season. Abbate has gone on to conquer many racing disciplines over her career and is now dipping her toes in NASCAR. She actually competed in a Craftsman Truck Series race in 2021! Who knows what the future holds for this superstar?
2. Essence Booker: UNLV basketball player
The jury is still out on whether Essence Booker is the future of women’s basketball, but she is a highlight in college. The 5 foot 8 guard is a member of The UNLV Rebels and could play in the WNBA one day If her numbers are any indicator. The Las Vegas native sits with an average of 13.3 points, and four assists, in 31 minutes a game.
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3. Katie Grimes: Olympic swimmer
While Katie Grimes is still in the early part of her swimming career, she has already accomplished a lot. Her biggest accolade remains her silver medal in the 1500 m Freestyle 2022 World Championship. She actually set the World Junior in the process, adding to her list of accomplishments.
Another key accolade has to be her silver medal in the 400 M competition that same year. Grimes did end up competing in a few other events for team USA but didn’t get a podium finish. Despite the disappointing results, Grimes looks poised for a future of success.
4. Vashti Cunningham: track and field athlete
Vashti Cunningham might sound like just another name, but she is a very successful athlete. She proved this by winning gold in the high jump during both the Indoor World Championships and the Pan American Junior Championship. She also holds an impressive record at the USA National Championships, only adding to her legacy.
Cunningham actually has won gold every year she has competed in the National Championships. This started in 2017 when she won gold in the high jump. She followed that up by winning gold again the next year and breaking an American Junior outdoor record. She’s just a different kind of athlete that always makes Las Vegas proud.
5. Chelsea Grey: basketball player
Chelsea Gray has done Sin City proud and a lot of those moments came when she wasn’t even here. One example is Grey being a part of the 2016 Los Angeles Sparks championship team. She later topped that feat by helping the Las Vegas Aces to a title in 2022 though, doubling her points per game in the process.
In fact, Gray finished the 2022 season with 13.7 points, 1.6 steals, 6.1 assists, and a .492 3-point percentage. Grey then went beast mode in the playoffs, stacking up 21 points, seven assists, and a .554 from the 3-point line. Grey might not have spent her entire career in Las Vegas, but she remains one of the city’s most successful athletes.