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How many medals has the US won in the history of Winter Olympics?

Team USA may be the undisputed medal table leaders in the Summer Games but when it comes to the Winter Olympics, Norway rule the roost.

Team United States celebrates their win during the Women's Ice Hockey Preliminary Round Group A match between Team United States and Team Finland at Wukesong Sports Centre on February 03, 2022 in Beijing, China.
Bruce BennettGetty Images

Unlike at the Summer Olympics, where Team USA holds a crushing advantage in the medal table over their nearest rivals, the Soviet Union and Great Britain, in the Winter Games medal stakes the United States plays second fiddle to the most successful nation of all time, Norway. The disparity in the number of golds the US has compared to the Soviet Union in the Summer Games can be explained by the number of participations of both nations – 28 for the US compared to just nine for the USSR (with Russia competing on six occasions since the Iron Curtain came down and sitting 12th in the all-time table.

Norway rule the roost at Winter Games

In the Winter Olympic, Norway and the US have both sent teams to the Games on 23 occasions, maintaining a presence at every Winter Olympics since the inaugural event in Chamonix, France, in 1924.

Similarly, the quadrennial hegemony of the USA at the Summer Games – where they have topped the medal table at 18 different Olympic Games – in the Winter edition Team USA have only once gained the most golds at a Games, at Lake Placid in 1934 where the “home” team won six golds to Norway’s three.

At the 2022 Games in Beijing there will be 327 medals up for grabs, with a Games record number of 109 events over 15 disciplines in seven sports. At the PyeongChang Olympics in 2018, Norway topped the table with a total of 39 medals (14 gold, 14 silver and 11 bronze) while the USA had to make do with fourth place (nine gold, eight silver and six bronze) behind Canada and Germany.

Nielsen’s Gracenote forecasts more Olympic glory for Norway

Norway will top the medals table for a second successive Winter Olympics with Germany in second place, according to final projections by Nielsen's Gracenote ahead of the Beijing Games. The Norwegians, who won a record 39 medals in Pyeongchang, are forecast to raise those tallies to 21 gold and a total haul of 44.

The key to Norway's dominance will be their performances in cross-country skiing and biathlon, with 28 of the medals forecast to come in those sports.

Germany and the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) are predicted to take home 30 medals each, but with 11 golds to the ROC's 10, the Germans are in line to repeat their second-placed finish in Pyeongchang. Russian athletes, competing under the flag of their Olympic committee because of doping sanctions, are projected to tie their previous best Winter Olympics tally from Sochi in 2014.

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The United States is predicted to finish fourth in the table with seven golds, down from nine in 2018, but that would be enough to reassert their ascendancy over Canada. The Canadians won 11 events in Pyeongchang to finish above their North American neighbours but are forecast to drop from third to fifth with six golds in Beijing.

Gracenote uses data from Olympics, World Championships and World Cups to feed a statistical model that forecasts the most likely gold, silver and bronze medallist in each event.

Host China is predicted to finish in 12th place with six golds and 13 medals overall, which would be their most successful Winter Olympics.

Japan is also expected to better its previous record of 13 medals with 19 while South Korea could take home only seven medals, down from 17 in Pyeongchang.


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