Paris, July 24, 2004 – The Gaz de France Paris Saint-Denis Meeting has surpassed the world record attendance
for an international athletics meeting by receiving 63 851 spectators through
the turnstiles of the Stade de France.
One year after the success of the 2003 IAAF World Championship in Athletics,
the amazing success of the Gaz de France Paris Saint-Denis Meeting confirms that
athletics have definitely secured a strong audience among the French public.
This ever-increasing popularity is particularly promising should Paris be selected
to host the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Over the years, track & field has established itself as one of the favourite
sport disciplines of the French crowds. Surveys from the World Championship showed
that the number of licensees in athletics has increased by 22% and that 99% of
the volunteers would be prepared to volunteer again for similar events.
Gérard Rousselle, founder and manager of the Gaz de France Paris Saint Denis Meeting, said: "It
is a pleasure to see this meeting growing in size and stature year after year
and becoming the biggest event of its category during the outdoor sports season.
Although the Golden League label is a vital factor for attracting the biggest
stars, who are competing, the athletes truly enjoy the meeting for its friendly
atmosphere. The enthusiastic, ecstatic and passionate French crowd is one of our
main assets in making the event a real festival."
The 2004 edition of the Gaz de France Meeting proved to be another spectacular,
with a star-studded line-up competing on the Stade de France track as they tested
their performances less than three weeks before the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens.
Should Paris be chosen to host the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the Athletics
competitions would be organised at the Stade de France designed in 1998 to become
an "Olympic stadium".