Maybe it's because you don't know the words, it seems some of the athletes don't know them either, perhaps they aren't taught in school these days. I think it is a marvellous anthem, not as good as "Land Of Hope And Glory" of course. But it certainly is not a dirge.
"God Save Our Gracious Queen" is a Dirge, with a capital "D".
among members of the public, who were asked to choose between
God Save the Queen
Land of hope and Glory
Jerusalem is said to have one of the most emotionally-stirring and patriotic verses ever written for music:-
"Bring me my bow of burning gold! Bring me my arrows of desire! Bring me my spear! O clouds, unfold! Bring me my chariot of fire! I will not cease from mental fight, Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand, Till we have built Jerusalem In England's green and pleasant land."