Belgian sportsman of the week

March 24, 2007 § 3 Comments

Belgium’s best long distance swimmer

This would be Brian Ryckeman for me, definitely! Brian managed to swim towards a 6th place in the world championships 10km in an incredible time of 1h55m! Moreover, this was only a couple of seconds away from a third place. And you’d think that, now that we have somebody representing us in Peking with the possibility for a medal, the media would be enthusiastic.

  • VRT television: mentioned in the news (15 seconds top)
  • Sporza: 3 minutes on the radio about Brian (interview with Stefaan Obreno)
  • De morgen: 97 words and 142 words
  • Searching the name Ryckeman in newspaper “De Standaard” doesn’t give any results
    Update (tnx Frank): 582 words (if you pay).
  • Het Laatste Nieuws: Exactly the same articles as in “De Morgen”, obviously they all get it from Belga
  • Searching in “Het Nieuwsblad” gives no results on the World Championships
  • Le Soir: 211 words (not sure whether this is a due to their “paying more attention to the Flemish” or “paying more attention to sports”. But châpeau!
  • La Dernière Heure: 322 words. I seem to remember that this newspaper was always better than the rest when it comes to reporting the swimming competition
  • La Libre Belgique: a search for the name Ryckeman didn’t result in any recent articles

To swimming standards, this isn’t bad. But on the other hand: Joris Grandjean, a huge talent, nonetheless not good enough to get into the first 6 I think, already gets an article almost solely dedicated to him of 773 words. And then there’s the massive media hype around football players who train once a day, or Belgian tennis player who aren’t even ranked in top 30

I do realise that most readers will have stopped reading by now, probably out of disinterest or boredom. But for the ones who have persevered, do realise that we have a great long distance swimming talent in Belgium. His name is Brian Ryckeman. And you will hear from him or read about him in the near future (even though you’ll have to dig to the last page of the sports sections).

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