What are some of the opinions of skating fans who were around in the 80s of Rosalynn Sumners. Looking back at various tapes of her amateur career I found her very nice and artistic, but kind of boring and rehearsed, none of the magic of Janet Lynn, or charisma and character on ice of Katarina Witt. She also wasnt that strong a jumper for her time, she barely eked out the triples she did manage it seemed, had lesser content, and was quite inconsistent. Sometimes I found her overmarked, although overall she did deserve all her big achievements- 3 U.S titles, 84 Olympic Silver, 83 World Gold, considering all facets (figures, etc...). It seems Peggy Fleming really liked her. It seems she hit her peak in 83, and in 83-84 most of her competitions were fairly mediocre, losing to Dubrovcic in one event, losing the short and long programs of Nationals to Tiffany Chin, so in retrospect her not skating that well at the Games and losing the Oly Gold shouldnt have been a surprise even though the U.S media seemed to tout her as the favorite.
As a pro skater I enjoyed her more but it seems contrary to her amateur career where the judges loved her and wanted to give her the results and marks (it seems the judges badly wanted to give her the 84 Olympic Gold, but she just made so many mistakes she made it impossible, and they still so nearly did), in pro competitions the judges were quite lukewarm and almost hard on her. I suspect some of that was political, she failed to get the Olympic Gold and Dorothy Hamill who of course did win the Olympic Gold and become a household name was easily winning every pro event over people like Fratianne, Sumners, Zayak, who all failed to achieve it. Granted I think Hamill is by far the best skater of that group but by then she was alot older, and she usually had by far the easiest content and still won each time. Probably being the only one of that bunch to get the Oly Gold meant she was ensured to win each pro competition before it began, LOL! Thomas also didnt win the Oly Gold and did fabulously and easily beat Sumners when they met at pro events, but in her case I think she was a bigger name and star even without the gold, than Sumners ever became without it.
One thing I always found strange about her was how she had horrible figures results the first few seasons of her amateur Senior career, but then dominated compulsory figures her last 2 seasons. Never saw such a major and lightning fast switch before.