Which nation wins most medals in PyeongChang? Germany looks golden

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Germany will top the PyeongChang Olympic medal standings if results repeat from this season’s winter sports world championships.

Germans have easily won the most medals (34) and golds (18) in Olympic events across this season’s world championships. A total of 100 of the 102 Olympic events (or their equivalents) have had their world championships contested already this season.

While men’s hockey and mixed doubles curling worlds are still to take place, Germany’s lead is insurmountable.

The medal standings:

Country Gold Silver Bronze Total
Germany 18 10 6 34
USA 12 7 9 28
Norway 8 9 10 27
Canada 7 11 8 26
France 5 8 9 22
Austria 8 5 7 20
Russia 4 8 7 19
Netherlands 10 3 5 18
Japan 4 7 4 15
Switzerland 3 6 5 14
China 4 3 3 10
Sweden 2 4 4 10
South Korea 3 1 4 8

Germany cleaned up in its hallmark sliding sports, winning seven gold medals in 10 events at bobsled, luge and skeleton world championships (aided significantly by hosting bobsled and skeleton worlds). It also earned seven of 11 golds at biathlon worlds and swept the three Nordic combined gold medals.

Germany topped the Winter Olympic medal standings in 1998, 2002 and 2006. It slipped to second behind the U.S. at Vancouver 2010.

In Sochi, Germany fell all the way down to sixth in total medals with 19, its fewest since reuniting East and West Germany at the Olympics 25 years ago.

The U.S. is likely to finish second in the world championships medal table, setting up well to repeat its second-place finish in the Sochi Olympic medal standings next year.

The Americans excelled in a number of sports this season. They range from the traditional strengths — freestyle skiing and snowboarding — to events with no Olympic medal history — biathlon and women’s cross-country skiing.

Russia, embroiled in a doping scandal, is not looking like the power that topped the Sochi standings with 33 medals and 13 golds. This winter, Russians have earned just four gold medals and rank seventh in total medals.

Russia finished sixth, fifth and sixth in total medals in the three Winter Games before Sochi. It appears likely to revert toward those places in PyeongChang, assuming it is able to send a full delegation.

Meanwhile, Olympic host country South Korea has earned eight medals this season, all in short- and long-track speed skating. That’s good for 13th place, which would match its output in Sochi.

South Korean athletes will undoubtedly receive a home-field advantage next February, likely resulting in a medal boost since most world championships were held in Europe.

They better. South Korean sports officials have repeated that the 2018 Olympic medal target is 20 overall, with eight gold, more than double the totals from this world championships season.

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MORE: PyeongChang 2018 daily schedule highlights

Olympic flame to travel by sea for Paris 2024, welcomed by armada

Paris 2024 Olympic Torch Relay Marseille
Paris 2024
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The Olympic flame will travel from Athens to Marseille by ship in spring 2024 to begin the France portion of the torch relay that ends in Paris on July 26, 2024.

The torch relay always begins in the ancient Olympic site of Olympia, Greece, where the sun’s rays light the flame. It will be passed by torch until it reaches Athens.

It will then cross the Mediterranean Sea aboard the Belem, a three-masted ship, “reminiscent of a true Homeric epic,” according to Paris 2024. It will arrive at the Old Port of Marseille, welcomed by an armada of boats.

Marseille is a former Greek colony and the oldest city in France. It will host sailing and some soccer matches during the Paris Olympics.

The full 2024 Olympic torch relay route will be unveiled in May.

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Paris 2024 Olympic Torch Relay Marseille
Paris 2024

Mikaela Shiffrin heads to world championships with medal records in sight

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Before Mikaela Shiffrin can hold the World Cup wins record, she can become the most decorated Alpine skier in modern world championships history.

Shiffrin takes a respite from World Cup pursuits for the biennial world championships in France. She is expected to race at least four times, beginning with Monday’s combined.

Shiffrin has a tour-leading 11 World Cup victories in 23 starts this season, her best since her record 17-win 2018-19 campaign, but world championships do not count toward the World Cup.

Shiffrin remains one career victory behind Swede Ingemar Stenmark‘s record 86 World Cup wins until at least her next World Cup start in March.

Shiffrin has been more successful at worlds than at the Olympics and even on the World Cup. She has 11 medals in 13 world championships races dating to her 2013 debut, including making the podium in each of her last 10 events.

ALPINE SKIING WORLDS: Broadcast Schedule

She enters worlds one shy of the modern, post-World War II individual records for total medals (Norway’s Kjetil Andre Aamodt won 12) and gold medals (Austrian Toni Sailer, Frenchwoman Marielle Goitschel and Swede Anja Pärson won seven).

Worlds take place exactly one year after Shiffrin missed the medals in all of her Olympic races, but that’s not motivating her.

“If I learned anything last year, it’s that these big events, they can go amazing, and they can go terrible, and you’re going to survive no matter what,” she said after her most recent World Cup last Sunday. “So I kind of don’t care.”

Shiffrin ranks No. 1 in the world this season in the giant slalom (Feb. 16 at worlds) and slalom (Feb. 18).

This year’s combined is one run of super-G coupled with one run of slalom (rather than one downhill and one slalom), which also plays to her strengths. She won that event, with that format, at the last worlds in 2021. The combined isn’t contested on the World Cup, so it’s harder to project favorites.

Shiffrin is also a medal contender in the super-G (Feb. 8), despite starting just two of five World Cup super-Gs this season (winning one of them).

She is not planning to race the downhill (Feb. 11), which she often skips on the World Cup and has never contested at a worlds. Nor is she expected for the individual parallel (Feb. 15), a discipline she hasn’t raced in three years in part due to the strain it puts on her back with the format being several runs for the medalists.

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