Ronald Robertson (figure skater)

Ronald Robertson
Ronnie Robertson 1962.jpg
Robertson in 1962
Personal information
Country represented United States
Born (1937-09-25)September 25, 1937
Brackenridge, Pennsylvania, U.S.[1]
Died February 4, 2000(2000-02-04) (aged 62)
Fountain Valley, California, U.S.
Former coach Gustave Lussi
Retired 1956

Ronald Frederick "Ronnie" Robertson (September 25, 1937 – February 4, 2000) was an American figure skater who was best known for his spinning ability. He won the silver medal at the 1956 Winter Olympics, became one of the youngest male figure skating Olympic medalists. He twice won the silver at the World Figure Skating Championships. He retired from skating after the 1956 U.S. Championships, where he was nearly disqualified after he was accused by the German Figure Skating Federation for excessive expenses on a European tour. His father, Albert Robertson, a naval architect, accused Hayes Jenkins of trying to disqualify his son.[2] After a huge fight with the U.S. Figure Skating Federation, Robertson was not disqualified after he lost to Jenkins and retired from competitive figure skating and signed a two-year contract with the Ice Capades for $100,000.[3]

In the 1950s, he had a long-term relationship with Tab Hunter,[4][5] who also helped fund his amateur career.[4] Robertson was coached by Gustave Lussi.[4]

Robertson's skating career was also well known on television. He appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1957, and his fast forward upright spin was described as being "faster than an electric fan." He also appeared on The Mickey Mouse Club that year.

After leaving skating to run a small hotel which he owned with his partner, Robertson was persuaded by Ted Wilson, a rink designer and manager in Hong Kong, to return to the ice and teach as a guest coach. Robertson, with former Japanese champion Sashi Kuchiki, made annual one-month trips to Hong Kong for 10 years teaching at Cityplaza Ice Palace on Hong Kong Island. Robertson was an extremely popular coach during this period and made a lasting impression with his skills and kindness.

During the 1964–65 New York World's Fair, Robertson appeared as the main attraction for Dick Button's Ice Travaganza show.

Ronnie Robertson died on February 4, 2000 at a hospital in Fountain Valley, California from complications of AIDS-related pneumonia at the age of 62.[3]


Event 1953 1954 1955 1956
Winter Olympics 2nd
World Championships 4th 5th 2nd 2nd
North American Championships 3rd
U.S. Championships 2nd 3rd 2nd


  1. ^ a b Ronnie Robertson.
  2. ^ "Skater Ronnie Robertson Incensed at Charge of Excessive Expenses". Milwaukee Journal. 17 March 1956. sec. Journal Final p. 2. Retrieved 30 September 2019.
  3. ^ a b Goldstein, Richard (February 17, 2000). "Ronnie Robertson, 62, a Skater Who Entertained With His Spins". The New York Times. Retrieved May 22, 2010.
  4. ^ a b c Hunter, Tab; Eddie Muller (2005). Tab Hunter Confidential: The Making of a Movie Star. Algonquin Books. ISBN 1-56512-548-7.
  5. ^ DiStefano, Blase. Fab Tab. OutSmart Magazine

External links