Asafa Powell and Usain Bolt in Stockholm 2008, Bolt's last defeat (© Hasse Sjögren)
The DN Galan, the annual Super Grand Prix meeting which takes place in the Swedish capital and is part of the IAAF World Athletics Tour, continues to dominate as the most written about and media covered sport event in Sweden.
With 2142 published articles, the 2008 DN Galan far succeeded all other events such as the Swedish Open (1720 articles), Scandinavian Masters (223) and Stockholm Marathon (404).
The numbers don’t surprise DN Galan’s meeting director Rajne Soderberg. “DN Galan, despite being a one-day event, has over the last years expanded with events such as youth competition and street events producing an athletics week,” he said.
“We have worked hard and have seen an increase comes to media interest and coverage for years and DN Galan provides the complete athletic package to capture audience as well as media.”
The numbers presented by the independent company Sponsring & Eventföreningen also concluded that sport events, in general, creates headlines and have a more dominant role in Swedish media compared to other events.
Still, despite a high interest for sports there are only a few of the events able to keep their position from last year or had an increase in media attention and publicity. DN Galan has managed to do both.
This year’s DN Galan saw some great 100m sprinting with Asafa Powell in a 9.88 dash prevailing over Usain Bolt by just 0.01. Among many other highlights of a great evening played out in front of a capacity crowd of 15,000 spectators there was also a close shave for the women’s 5000m world record (14:11.15) as Meseret Defar finished in 14:12.88, just outside the mark her compatriot Tirunesh Dibaba had established earlier in the summer in Oslo.