Randy Gardner (figure skater)

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Randy Gardner
Gardner in 1979
Personal information
Full nameRandy Gardner
Country representedUnited States
Born (1958-12-02) December 2, 1958 (age 64)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Former partnerTai Babilonia
Former coachJohn Nicks
Skating clubSanta Monica FSC
Los Angeles FSC
Medal record
Representing United States
Pairs' Figure skating
World Championships
Gold medal – first place 1979 Vienna Pairs
Bronze medal – third place 1978 Ottawa Pairs
Bronze medal – third place 1977 Tokyo Pairs

Randy Gardner (born December 2, 1958) is an American former pair skater. Together with Tai Babilonia, he won the 1979 World Figure Skating Championships[1] and five U.S. Figure Skating Championships (1976–1980). The pair qualified for the 1976 and 1980 Winter Olympics.


Babilonia and Gardner began skating together when Babilonia was eight and Gardner ten.[2] Their first coach was Mabel Fairbanks, and later they were coached by John Nicks. The pair became five-time U.S. national champions and won the gold medal at the 1979 World Championships.[3][4] They were medal favorites at the 1980 Winter Olympics but were forced to withdraw due to a thigh injury to Gardner.[2][5][6]

In 2006, Gardner appeared as a choreographer on the reality television series Skating with Celebrities.[7] In 2008, he indicated that he was working on his autobiography which was to be released at the end of the year.[8] It has not been released. In 2008, Babilonia and Gardner announced their retirement from show skating due to a neck injury sustained by Gardner and their advancing ages.[9][6]

Personal life[edit]

Gardner discovered in 1998 that he was adopted after a relative divulged the family secret.[2][9] After a five-year search, he found his birth mother who had become pregnant with him at age 17 after being raped by a family friend.[2] In 2006, Gardner revealed that he is gay.[2][10][11]

Competitive highlights[edit]

(with Babilonia)

Event 1973–74 1974–75 1975–76 1976–77 1977–78 1978–79 1979–80
Winter Olympic Games 5th WD
World Championships 10th 10th 5th 3rd 3rd 1st
U.S. Championships 2nd 2nd 1st 1st 1st 1st 1st
Nebelhorn Trophy 1st
Coupe des Alpes 3rd
WD = Withdrew


  1. ^ Franco, Joe (1997-07-08). "Tai and Randy, Skating's Dynamic Duo". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2023-08-14.
  2. ^ a b c d e Elliott, Helene (March 20, 2008). "Tai and Randy's bond is sure and steady off the ice". Los Angeles Times.
  3. ^ "World Figure Skating Championships Results: Pairs medalists" (PDF). International Skating Union. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2007-07-10.
  4. ^ "Past U.S. Champions - Senior" (PDF). Excel Energy Center. Archived from the original (PDF) on February 9, 2012.
  5. ^ Rosewater, Amy (January 14, 2013). "A life in skating: An interview with John Nicks". IceNetwork.
  6. ^ a b Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill; et al. "Randy Gardner". Olympics at Sports-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Archived from the original on 2020-04-18.
  7. ^ Skating with Celebrities (TV Series 2006– ) - IMDb, retrieved 2023-08-14
  8. ^ "Catching up with...Randy Gardner". Lifeskate.com. April 11, 2008.
  9. ^ a b "Together Forever". People Magazine, Vol. 69, No. 20, p. 159. May 26, 2008.
  10. ^ Zeigler, Cyd (2017-11-08). "Olympian Randy Gardner shares his life as a gay athlete in the 1980s". Outsports. Retrieved 2023-08-14.
  11. ^ "Go Figure: The Randy Gardner Story | U.S. Figure Skating". www.usfigureskating.org. 2021-06-16. Retrieved 2023-08-14.

External links[edit]