The dream of many years was realized during 1955 when a team on nine U.S. Amateur Roller Skating Association titlists crossed the Atlantic to participate for the first time in World championship competition on foreign soil. The big meet was skated Oct. 20, 21, 22 and 23 on a 132 by 66 foot surface of concrete at the Palacio Municipal de Deportes in Barcelona, Spain.
United States standard-bearers placed third behind Germany and Great Britain. The best red-white-and-blue showing was a second in men’s singles by U.S. senior men’s winner William Ferraro of Livonia, Mich.
Other Countries represented were Belgium, France, Holland, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland and New Zealand.
“Many of the Europeans were truly great skaters”, said USARSA president George Apdale of Richmond Hill, N.Y. who accompanied the yanks as coach. The association’s secretary-treasurer Ozzie Nelson also went along – as U.S. judge.
Funds for the American invasion of Spain were raised by direct donations and amateur club functions. Details of the junket were carefully planned in advance.
The team sailed with considerable fanfare on Oct. 5 aboard U.S. Export Line’s luxury cruise ship Independence. While at sea, skaters worked out on-deck rink of tempered Masonite.
By way of diversion from the business at hand, there were special sightseeing trips in chartered buses, taking in such places at Gibraltar, Granada and Valencia. All members returned to this country by air on Oct. 26.
Here’s how U.S. Skaters placed:
Men’s Singles; Bill Ferraro, 2nd; John Haddad, 4th; Jack Crichton, 6th.
Pairs; Jack Crichton & Margie Adair, 7th; John Haddad & Diane Lanzotti, 8th.
Dance; Ray & Jeanne Tiedemann, 4th; Edward O’Donnell & Barbara McCusker, 5th.
WORLD MEET PLACE-WINNERS
1.Franz Ningel, Germany, (figures 1st)
2.William Ferraro, U.S.A. (figures 3rd)
3.Herbert Beyer, Germany, (figures 2nd)
1.Helene Kienzle, Germany, (figures 1st)
2.Lotte Cadenbach, Germany, (figures 1st)
3.Diana Fret, Belgium, (figures 3rd)
1.Gunter Koch & Sigrid Knake, Germany
2.Werner Mensching & Rita Blumenberg, Germany
3. Albert Wilson & Sheila Anderson, Gr. Britain
1.Karlheinz Beyer & Marga Schafer, Germany
2.Gunter Koch & Sigrid Knake, Germany
3.Malcolm Whelan & Mary Grainger, Gr. Britain
YANK TEAM -----The USARSA team of nine skaters for World Meet in Barcelona, Spain, is snapped on masonite practice rink aboard luxury liner S.S. Independence. Men are (l. to r.) William Ferraro, Jr., of Garden City, Mich., Jack Crichton, East Meadow, N.Y., John Haddad, Bayonne, N.J., Ed O'Donnell, Port Washington, N.Y., and Ray Tiedemann, Mt. Vernon, N.Y., Ladies are: Barbara McCusker, Mineola, N.Y., Jeanne Teidemann, Mt. Vernon, N.Y., Margie Adair, Hatboro, Pa., and Diane Lanzotti, Bayonne, N.J.