With just 25 days to go until the GE GalanIAAF Indoor Permit – meeting in Stockholm’s famous Globe arena on 10 February, the annual full-house of spectators in the Swedish capital can relish the prospect of a great sprint hurdles battle, and the reappearance of one of the all-time greats of Swedish athletics.
Last summer’s two fastest 110m hurdlers Dayron Robles from Cuba and David Oliver from the United States will meet on Stockholm’s straight-away for the men’s 60m Hurdles. Though injury ended the Olympic champion’s World championship hopes Robles still ended the 2009 outdoor season as the fastest in the world with a best of 13.04 seconds, while Oliver, the Olympic bronze medallist the previous year in Beijing, was the second fastest of 2009 with a 13.09 clocking early season in Doha before injury also ruined his year.
Robles last raced in the Globe in 2008 winning the 60m Hurdles in 7.44 sec, while the previous winter he was also the winner this time solidly defeating Oliver, 7.48 to 7.61; that race was Oliver’s last appearance at the GE Galan meeting.
Oliver has a personal best for the indoor 60m Hurdles from last winter of 7.45 sec thanks to his win in Stuttgart, while Robles the World outdoor record holder for 110m Hurdles, has a best for the 60m Hurdles indoors of 7.33 sec, which is the Area record he set in 2008 in Düsseldorf.
Olsson back indoors after three years
Christian Olsson, the joint holder of the World indoor record for the Triple Jump (with Cuba’s Aliecer Urrutia, 1997), is looking forward to competing in the GE Galan for the first time in three years.
The 29-year-old Swede, the 2003 World and 2004 Olympic champion, has been the World Indoor gold medallist on two occasions 2003 and 2004, but injury has blighted the last few years of his career and he has only competed on a total of four occasions in the last two years.
Olsson whose World indoor record was set when winning the global title in Budapest in 2004 (17.83m) last competed at the 2007 GE Galan winning that year with a 17.26m effort; that was his last indoor competition of any kind to date. He is currently training in South Africa.
Chris Turner for the IAAF