Monday, February 22, 2010

Not Owning the Podium

It was a fair assumption that could have finished with the most medals at these games. In 2006 Canada won seven gold, ten silver, and seven bronze, this was good enough to rank fifth in the medals when weighted by gold and third when weighted by total medals. Canada was only four golds or five total medals for first in both categories.

Canada could have been much higher in the medals at this time, but these are the games where shit just happened and Canadians did not manage to win.

  • Men's Long Track - we could easily have had three to four medals here.
  • Women's Long Track - we were just short in getting three more medals
  • Men's 2 Man Bob Sleigh - till their flip we were headed for a medal
  • Women's Skeleton, silver was a lock with a decent run
  • Men's Skeleton - we had a chance to get bronze as well
  • Men's Short Track - the Hamelins alone could have added two in one race. In the 1500m we placed fourth and seventh
  • Men's Ski Cross - easily could have been a medal.
  • Snowboard Half Pipe Mens and Womens - we could have medaled in either one.
  • Men's Cross Country - we came fourth in the team sprint and 5th in the 30K pursuit
  • Men's Biathlon - 6th place in the Men's Sprint
  • Men's Moguls - we won gold but could have sweep the board as Canadians finished fourth and fifth
  • Women's Moguls - we won silver but also had a fifth place finish
  • Men's Figure Skating - 19 year old Patrick Chan came fifth
14 to 20 more medals could have been won my Canada by this time. This means we could have been at 23 to 29 medals at this point and this would have put us right at the top of the standings. We could have been sitting with more winter medals as of today than ever before in an Olympic Games - Summer or Winter.

So what is still realistic?
  • Freestyle skiing - three more is reasonable
  • Curling - 2 medals both gold
  • Hockey - 2 medals both gold
  • Womens Short Track - two medals
  • Ice Dancing - we could win gold tonight
  • Snowboard Parallel Giant Slalom Mens and Womens - two medals reasonable
  • Women's Long Track - one or two more medals
  • Men's Long Track - one more medal
  • Men's Short Track - a silver or gold is reasonable in the 5000m relay
  • Women's Bobsleigh - either team could medal
  • Men's 4 man Bobsleigh - a medal is possible
15 to 20 more medals is entirely realistic. Of these we should expect to see seven more golds. If everything goes wrong, it would be hard for us to win fewer than 12 more medals.

It will take 15 more medals for Canada to tie the largest number of medals, that being in Turin in 2006. This is very much achievable.

2010 has been a very good games for the US and Germany, the US is almost level with where they were at the end of Turin.

If Canada wins seven more golds and a total of 20 more medals should place us very close to the top of the medal rankings. With 11 gold, 11 silver and 9 bronze, we could finish first in the medal standings. Germany does not have many events left where they could win a medal, the US still has some good chances to win more medals.

Own the Podium has been working for Canada, athletes have just been unlucky. In 2014 Canada should very easily finish in the top three in medals. Canada is not a threat at all in four of the fifteen winter sports. Any changes to that and Canada will become the country in winter sports.

With the Whistler Sliding Centre Canada will become a force in Luge and build stronger Skeleton and Bobsleigh teams. The Ski jumps in Whistler will mean that Canada can build a team to win medals in the future. Nordic combined also becomes a reasonable sport for a Canadian team.

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