Vuchko, The Friendly Wolf. 1983.

1983 World Junior Championships at The Netropolitan Museum of Figure Skating Pins

Vuchko is the multi-sport athlete/mascot who reigned over the 1984 Olympic Winter Games in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia. He made an early appearance in Sarajevo on the pin issued for the 1983 World Junior Figure Skating Championships held in that city. In Yugoslavian fables, the wolf is a prominent figure that embodies courage and strength and symbolizes winter. Vuchko’s smiling face earned him notice as The Friendly Wolf, although he certainly also looks a bit mischievous.

Held in mid-December 1982, the 1983 World Junior Championships were contested at Zetra Olympic Hall1 in Sarajevo as part of the run-up to the 1984 Games that would open just over a year later. As figure skating pins go, the smiling face of Vuchko, gliding along effortlessly with very nice form, is a decidedly refreshing change of pace from other mascot pins of the era, which generally tended to be unsophisticated.

As figure skating pins go, the smiling face of Vuchko, gliding along effortlessly with very nice form, is a decidedly refreshing change of pace …

Designed on a silver-colored metal and in relief, the pin measures approximately 1″ square (2.5 cm). Vuchko anchors the pin in the center while split along the top and bottom are the event name, location, and year: “ISU World Juniors, Sarajevo, 1983.” A pebbly, textured background contrasts nicely with the polished finish on the lettering and on Vuchko himself. Interestingly, this is the first World Junior Championships pin—and among only a handful of pins from any major international event through 1990—to incorporate the sport’s governing body, “ISU.” Use of ISU became more common on pins many years later.

Vuchko, The Friendly Wolf invites you to read about pins from other World Junior Championships, including 1976 and 1977, 1978, 1979, 1981, and 1982.

Enjoy Vuchko, The Friendly Wolf. 1983.

1In the early 1990s, Zetra Arena was significantly damaged during the Bosnian War. It was rebuilt later that same decade and in 2010 was renamed Juan Antonio Samaranch Olympic Hall in honor of the late International Olympic Committee president.


1983 World Junior Figure Skating Championships Pin Gallery

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1 thought on “Vuchko, The Friendly Wolf. 1983.”

  1. […] For the second time in three figure skating seasons, the best junior-level skaters from more than 20 nations gathered in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia, to compete for a world title when the 1986 World Junior Figure Skating Championships came to town. It was just two years after the 1984 Olympic Winter Games, and Zetra Arena, site of the event, was still a new facility—one that ultimately would be destroyed but would rise again. Zetra was also site of the 1983 World Junior Figure Skating Championships, which was the first major event held in the arena (read the pin blog). […]

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