4 December 1963 |
|Former coach||Agnesa Búřilová|
|Olympic medal record|
|Men's figure skating|
|Competitor for Czechoslovakia|
Jozef (Jumping Joe) Sabovčík (born 4 December 1963 in Bratislava) is a Slovak figure skater who competed representing Czechoslovakia. He is the 1984 Olympic bronze medalist and two-time European Champion (1985 and 1986).
Sabovčík was born in Bratislava, then in Czechoslovakia, and began skating when he was six years old. He was a six-time national champion of Czechoslovakia. He won the bronze medal at 1981 Skate Canada International and in 1982 he also won bronze at Skate America. At the 1983 European Championships he won the silver medal.
He landed a quad toe loop at the 1986 European Championships. It was approved at the time as the first quad in competition but a few weeks later ruled invalid because of a touchdown with his free foot.
Despite a knee injury, he had to compete at the 1986 World Championships because his federation did not believe he was really injured. He said, "It was the hardest 4½ minutes of my skating career, knowing that I had to finish, but could hardly walk, let alone skate." He retired from competition in 1986.
Sabovčík was known for his jumping ability and later turned it into a lucrative professional career. He is known for an excellent tuck Axel. "Sometimes there is beauty in simplicity and I think an open Axel is very beautiful. A tuck Axel is basically the same thing, but it has a little more edge to it, which is great for me, because I can use it with my rock numbers. If you noticed in my slower, quieter programs I always do an open Axel as it's better suited for that kind of music." He was disappointed by the loss of compulsory figures, saying, "In my opinion, the quality of skating itself (not jumping) has gone down. Figures taught how to use edges, like Robin Cousins and Brian Boitano still do, that with a couple of pushes they can get across the whole rink, you don't see that with the new skaters."
He still performs professionally and is known by the nickname "Jumping Joe". Sabovčík sports a long flowing blond mullet haircut and is known for performing to heavy metal and other rock music.
- "In Loving Memory" by Alter Bridge
Personal life 
Sabovčík's first marriage was to Canadian champion Tracey Wainman, with whom he has a son named Blade. His second marriage is to Jennifer Verili, with whom he has a son named Jozef Jaden, born in 2003.
|*Sub-national level; WD = Withdrew|
- "Jozef Sabovcik: Online Interview". GoldenSkate. 2 February 2003. Archived from the original on 25 July 2008.
- Hloch, Jan (21 April 2008). "Světové krasobruslařské hvězdy nadchly Prahu" [World skating stars in Prague] (in Czech). Czech Radio. Retrieved 28 April 2010. "Fantastickou atmosféru vyprodané haly si plnými doušky vychutnával i bronzový medailista z OH v Sarajevu a mistr Evropy Jozef Sabovčík."
- "Jozef Sabovcik" (in German). Munzinger.de.
- "The quad: Skating's evolution is for more revolution". CBS Sports. 2 December 1999. Retrieved 31 October 2011.
- Sabovcik, Jozef. Jumpin' Joe: The Jozef Sabovcik Story. 1998.