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U.S.A., China and Russia Remain on Top Despite Recent I.A.A.F. Ruling, Women Athletes Will Make Outsized Contributions to Medal Counts

EMERYVILLE, Calif., July 6, 2016 – Gracenote®, the world’s leading provider of entertainment data and subsidiary of Tribune Media Company (NYSE: TRCO), refreshes its medal count predictions for the upcoming 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro based on new developments which will affect the competition. Gracenote’s Virtual Medal Table offers a look at the potential winners and losers of the 2016 Rio Olympics based on analysis of the most up-to-date team and athlete data, as well as recent rulings and news affecting the Games.

The International Association of Athletics Federations (I.A.A.F.) ruled on June 17th to ban the Russian Athletics (Track and Field) team from the upcoming Rio Olympics due to the illegal use of performance enhancing drugs. However, a more recent ruling enables individual Russian athletes who can prove they are “clean” to apply for permission to compete in Rio as neutral, independent athletes. According to Gracenote’s predictions, these rulings taken together will cause Russia to win six fewer medals overall.

If the Games were held today and Russia’s athletes do not take part, Gracenote’s Virtual Medal Table predicts the following:

  • U.S.A. will be the top medal winner with a combined 92 medals (41 gold, 23 silver and 28 bronze).
  • China will stay in second place with a combined 82 medals (31 gold, 26 silver and 25 bronze).
  • Russia will stay in third with a combined 57 medals (20 gold, 19 silver and 18 bronze) despite the ban on numerous competitors from its Athletics team.
  • Great Britain will be up by two medals to 51 total medals (18 gold, 16 silver and 17 bronze).

“To understand the impact of the I.A.A.F. ruling banning Russia’s Athletics team from the Summer Games on the overall medal count, Gracenote’s Virtual Medal Table is the perfect predictive tool,” said Simon Gleave, Head of Analysis at Gracenote Sports. “Our predictions for the 2016 Rio Games take into account not only recent results in key events but also factors like the absence of important competitors.”

Other countries are predicted to see improvements from previous Olympic Games. According to Gracenote’s current Virtual Medal Table:

  • Host country Brazil will enjoy a record medal haul with 20 medals (8 gold, 9 silver and 3 bronze) in the Rio Games.
  • Japan is projected to challenge its best ever Olympic performance by winning 38 medals (14 gold, 10 silver and 14 bronze). This will be the third time in four Summer Olympics that the Japanese will win at least 35 medals.
  • Korea Republic is predicted to win 25 medals (10 gold, 5 silver and 10 bronze), bringing the nation’s total medal count to 231 medals since hosting the 1988 Seoul Olympics. Korea Republic is the second most successful Olympic nation in Asia during this period behind China.
  • New Zealand is expected to win a new record of 25 medals (7 gold, 11 silver and 7 bronze), a 92% improvement since the 2012 London Games.
  • Australia is predicted to win 42 medals (16 gold, 13 silver and 13 bronze) in Rio, compared to 35 overall medals in London.
  • Netherlands is expected to set a new record by winning 26 medals (7 gold, 9 silver and 10 bronze) and surpassing the 25 combined medals won in Sydney 2000.
  • France will see its best medal count since the 1900 Paris Olympics with 47 medals (12 gold, 17 silver and 18 bronze). France’s 12 gold medals, an increase of one over its London 2012 haul, will be the most the country has won since Sydney 2000.
  • Germany is predicted to win 50 medals (16 gold, 16 silver and 18 bronze), the nation’s best performance since the 2000 Sydney Olympics.

Additionally, Gracenote’s analysis has found that women’s events in Rio will account for an all-time high of 44% of total medals. Men’s events will account for 53% of medals while mixed and open events will account for the remaining 3% of medals. Prior to the 1988 Seoul Olympics, women had won fewer than 30% of all medals. However, women athletes representing individual countries have made a significant impact on the medal counts over more recent years. Japan and Romania (2000 Sydney Olympics), Poland (2004 Athens Olympics) and Jamaica (2008 Beijing Olympics) have had 70% or more of their total medals won by women. The Netherlands currently holds the record for highest percentage of Olympic medals won by women athletes at 85%. The breakdown for the 2016 Rio Olympics are below.

  • 75% of Canada’s total medals will be won by women.
  • 59% of U.S.A.’s total medals are predicted to be taken home by women.
  • Out of 26 total medals the Netherlands is predicted to win, 54% will go to women athletes.
  • New Zealand and China women athletes will claim 56% and 54% of their respective country’s total medal counts.
  • Exactly half of Brazil’s 20 medals will be awarded to women.
  • Other countries taking home significant percentages of medals by women athletes are Russia (49%), Japan (47%) and Australia (45%).

The Gracenote Virtual Medal Table also forecasts how individual athletes will perform during the Rio Games. Here are a few athletes from veterans to newcomers to keep an eye on in August:

  • Michael Phelps, USA: Four gold medals (100m butterfly, 200m individual medley, 4x200m medley, 4x200m freestyle), and two bronze medals (200m butterfly, 4x100m freestyle)
  • Simone Biles, U.S.A.: Four gold medals (beam, floor, individual all-around, team) and one silver medal (vault)
  • Jordan Spieth, U.S.A.: One gold medal (golf-individual) as a result of Australia’s Jason Day pulling out of the games due to the threat of Zika
  • James Guy, Great Britain: One gold medal (200m freestyle), one silver medal (4x200m freestyle), and one bronze medal (400m freestyle)
  • Cate Campbell, Australia: Three gold medals (50m freestyle, 100m freestyle, 4x100m freestyle), and one silver medal (4x100m medley)
  • Kohei Uchimura, Japan: Three gold medals (individual all-around, horizontal bar, team)
  • Kristina Vogel, Germany: Two gold medals (cycling sprint, keirin), and one bronze medal (cycling team sprint)

For a closer look at the full Virtual Medal Table, its features and methodology, please visit: http://sportsdemo1.gracenote.com/documentation/vmt.

Gracenote acquired Infostrada Sports and SportsDirect in May 2015 and launched Gracenote Sports. These acquisitions made Gracenote the first global provider of music, video and sports data, transforming the company into a one-stop data solutions provider serving a roster of top-tier customers around the world. Today, Gracenote Sports offers rich data on 4,500 of the world’s most popular leagues and competitions as well as a deep trove of historical Olympics information going back to the very first modern games in 1896.

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