# Number of medals versus number of Golds.

I’d think more in terms of numbers of events - some events are won by teams, and a win in the event yields medals per member. I want to see a table based on events medaled, not medal count yield.

Well, the IOC webpage refers to http://en.beijing2008.cn/ as the official webpage, and they use Gold medals won as the ranking here: http://results.beijing2008.cn/WRM/ENG/INF/GL/95A/GL0000000.shtml

As someone posting on a cbc.ca news article pointed out this morning, there really is only one “winner” to any event, and that person (or team) gets the Gold medal. So in that way, ranking by number of Golds is a better measure of who is “winning” the medal count.

FWIW, I’ve always seen rankings by medal count in Canada.

So here is the basic question I have.

In previous IOC rankings, have they consistently ranked gold medals over total?

Or is this moot since the U.S. has won the most gold and the most total?

I’m referring mainly to summer Olympics, but Winter should count if its relevant.

Yes, the Gold medal ranking is the common and standard IOC ranking measurement.
See, for instance, the 2006 Torino medal ranking.
http://olympic.org/uk/games/past/table_uk.asp?OLGT=2&OLGY=2006

This dick measuring gets more complicated every year…

True. :rolleyes:

And if you only watch US* TV Olympic coverage, who would you think was winning?

*Of course, I expect Chinese TV would give an entirely different impression…

The BBC, which should obviously be considered the de facto ‘official’ source where no official ‘official’ source exists :D, has to my recollection always listed by gold medals, even in Atlanta where GB only won one gold. In response I have always recalculated the table using 3-2-1 weighted totals. Fortunately at the present moment (GB has 15g 8s 8b, Aus has 11g 11s 12b) we are beating the Aussies in both measures. The US favoured add-em-all-up method is clearly flawed as that has Australia beating the UK by 3 which can’t be right, can it?

The US was below the USSR in both counts in 1972, 1976, 1988, 1992 (unified team), and ahead in both counts in 1968, 1996, 2000, and 2004. (1980 and 1984 not included.) There were also a few years where East Germany beat the US too.

The last year it would make a difference is 1964, where the US won more golds and less total medals than the USSR.

The US usually comes in 5th or so in the Winter Olympics, after various cold European countries.

Another consideration is that the medal count should be influenced by the number of players on the team. IMHO, if there are 12 guys on the basketball team and it wins the gold, that should count for 12 gold medals, rather than just 1. Similarly, a 4 person relay would count for 4 medals, a two person rowboat 2 medals, etc. In dressage, I would give one medal for the rider and one for the horse.

I also think the medal count should be weighted as BabaBoey and others have already said.

Normally I’d hate such an idea, but given that Britain’s got a clutch of medals from team events in the rowing, cycling and sailing…

This settles it, to me.

Was China’s goal to win the most medals, or the most goals? Or, which was their primary goal? I thought they wanted the most medals total.