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Norway Skiing Away with Medals Race

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We worked with the Wall Street Journal to develop Olympic medal projections and shared them in the Journal here and in the Stat of the Week a couple of weeks ago here. With a week left of the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, the model is working pretty well. Except for the United States.

There are 61 of 102 events completed at this point. Norway is on pace to win the medal title as was originally projected. However, the United States was projected to tie with them and they are far behind. Our updated projections are:

Current Projection Original Projection
Gold Total Gold Total
Norway 16 38 12 36
Canada 11 35 11 33
Germany 12 30 13 32
USA 10 22 11 36

For the United States, the number of gold medals is not far from the original projection. However, their total medal count in our current projection is only 22, compared to 36 originally. Here is where they are falling short by sport (as of Sunday night):

Total Medal Projection Shortage for USA - By Sport
Sport Current Original Difference
Freestyle Skiing 4 9 -5
Long Track Speed Skating 1 4 -3
Cross Country 1 3 -2
Biathlon 0 1 -1
Alpine Skiing 2 3 -1
Luge 1 2 -1
Curling 0 1 -1
Figure Skating 2 3 -1
Snowboard 8 7 1

The biggest shortages for the United States are happening in Freestyle Skiing and Long Track Speed Skating. Nevertheless, the excitement generated by the likes of Shaun White and 17-year-olds Red Gerard and Chloe Kim with their gold medals in Snowboard continues to fuel the American team. The United States is currently projected to exceed its original medal projection in that sport.

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