Gothenburg – stands up for Olympic history

The 22d World Olympic Collectors Fair will be organized May 13-15 by the Gothenburg Sports Museum, the only Swedish member of the Olympic Museum’s Network. For information on the Olympic Collectors Fair, please visit

That Gothenburg (Göteborg in Swedish) will be host is no coincidence. The town, second biggest in the country, has a long sports history to be proud of.

Photo of Eric Lemming with awards

Eric Lemming

110 years ago Erik Lemming was the first Swedish Olympic gold medallist. The Gothenburg javelin thrower (and much more) was the first real sports star in his country and won three more Olympic gold medals 1908-12. Two of them can be seen in the Gothenburg Sports museum and a small arena not far from the museum is named after him. There have been a lot more Olympic winners from the town since then, too many to mention here. Some of them will attend the Collectors Fair to sign autographs.

In 1926, the so-called Ladies’ Olympics (World Women’s Games) were held at the famous Slottsskogsvallen, where so many athletics world records have been beaten. There is a display of the games in the museum.

The swim hall, Valhallabadet, was opened in 1956, but eight years earlier Nils Olsson was awarded an Olympic bronze medal for his architecture of the hall, that is still in use.

The grand stadium Ullevi was the pride of the town when it was built for the soccer World Cup 1958. It has been used for many other world championships in different sports and to mention one, the Track and Field World Championships 1995 was a big success.

Ullevi still has the Swedish record attendance numbers for football, athletics, speed skating, boxing, speedway and ice hockey.

But the sports town is not resting on old merits. Only six days after the fair, the world’s biggest half marathon, Göteborgsvarvet, is run. From 4-9th of July, handball is dominating the town with Partille Cup, the biggest youth tournament in the world with 20,000 players from 50 countries. And when those finals are finished, another biggest-in-the-world youth tournament takes over. Gothia Cup gathers about 40,000 young football players from more than 80 nations!

There is always something big going on in Gothenburg sports. By the way, Frölunda Indians just won the Swedish Ice Hockey championships. You can guess their home town.

Cege Berglund
Press Information Officer

Photo of athlete crossing finish line at 1926 Ladies' Olympics

The finish line, 1926 Ladies’ Olympics