Congratulations to the US for having a fantastic Olympics, beating out China for the top spot in medals. It gets a bit tedious for smaller nations to see the Americans win so often, but if you look at the numbers the smaller nations actually do quite well.
The UK for instance with 5 times less the population than the US, got 29 golds (US 46) 17 silver (US 29) and 19 bronze (US 29).
If you take just a few European countries (not including high medal winning Russia, even though nearly all it's population live in the European part of Russia) and add up there medals they quickly have far more medals than the US.
Here's the results-
GB- gold 29, silver 17, bronze 19 (population 62 million)
Germany- gold 11, silver 19, bronze 14 (population 81 million)
France- gold 11, silver 11, bronze 12 (population 65 million)
That comes to 51 golds, (US 46) 47 silvers, (US 29) and 45 bronzes (US 29) from a population with about 100 million people less than the US.
If you include more countries to catch up to Americas population, the medal tally climbs again-
Italy- gold 8, silver 9, bronze 11 (population 60 million)
Hungary- gold 8, silver 4, bronze 5 (population 10 million)
Netherlands- gold 6, silver 6, bronze 8 (population 16 million)
Ukraine- gold 6, silver 5, bronze 9 (population 45 million)
So with about the same population as the US, European countries get (not even including big medal winner Russia) 79 golds (US 46) 71 silvers (US 29) and 78 bronzes (US 29).
The best from Europe are undoubtedly the worlds best .
Obviously too in team events (of which there are many), picking the best of the best from these European countries would mean much stronger teams than they could get now, meaning even more medals (especially golds). That alone would more than offset the fact there would be fewer actual teams and competitors competing.
Edited by Hands Sandon - 8/14/12 at 6:35am