Goebel Plans Four Quads in Free Skate

Tim Goebel

When Timothy Goebel takes the ice Saturday afternoon in Dallas for the men's free skate at the 2003 State Farm U.S. Figure Skating Championships, spectators will see a familiar program with a new twist.

Goebel will perform his "American in Paris" free skate but will add a quadruple jump - putting his quad total for the program at four.

"I've done the three quads and two triple Axels in my long for three seasons now," Goebel said. "I just want to do something different because it gets stale to do the same elements in every program."

He plans two quadruple Salchows and two quad toe loops. If he lands them, Goebel will be the first man to land four quad jumps in a single program during a major competition. He was the first skater to land three quadruple jumps in a program at Skate America in 1999.

Goebel said he is sticking with the same free skate because time constraints and an injury didn't allow him to perfect a new program.

"I just didn't have time to make my new long program look the way I wanted it to look," he said. "I got through it pretty well at the pro-am (Crest Whitestrips International Figure Skating Challenge) but that's not nearly the level at which I wanted to be skating it."

Besides landing four quadruple jumps, Goebel is hoping to place in the top three and make it to the World Championships in March in Washington, D.C.

"I don't have any other expectations other than to get a spot on the World Team just because I'm one of the only top-level senior competitors that hasn't done anything all year," he said.

A hip injury sidelined Goebel in October 2002, forcing him to withdraw from the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating and take a break from skating.

"It was just an overuse injury, nothing was torn and there was no permanent damage," he said. "I was off for two weeks completely not skating. I wasn't doing triples for at least another two weeks and then I started doing quads."

Now Goebel said he's happy to be healthy, well trained and ready to compete. The men's short program will begin Thursday at 4:40 p.m.