Over the past few days I have begun to hear commentators and ‘pundits’ talking about how well we are doing (or ‘not’ as the case may be) at #Rio2016. Like those commentators I also had the feeling that we were performing pretty poorly this time round so I thought I’d do some research as to how terrible the New Zealand Olympic Class of 2016 is…and found out something quite interesting.
New Zealand, as New Zealand, has been competing at the Olympic Games since 1920, up to an including the 2012 London Olympics that is 21 appearances competing against the rest of the world. Over those 21 Olympics New Zealand has won Gold 41 times. By my account there are a total of 71 New Zealanders that have won a Gold Medal at any Olympics, including when we competed as Australasia. There have been four occasions when New Zealand has not received any Gold Medals (1920, 1924, 1932, 1948) at an Olympic Games and only twice where New Zealand has won over 3 Gold Medals (8 in 1984 and 6 in 2012).
If you add all these numbers together you understand that New Zealand averages just under two Gold Medals at every Olympics and if we get more than three it is an extraordinary event.
Which means if we look to #Rio2016 with this understanding we will see clearly that as we currently have two Gold Medals, and the chance of more to come, we are doing pretty well. Yes I agree that with 6 Gold Medals at the #London2012 we would have liked to see growth, but it is unrealistic when looking at the history of New Zealand competing at the Olympics that all of a sudden we would go from winning two or three Gold Medals to consistently winning 6+.
So well done to all the New Zealand Olympians and all you couch commentators remember if we can hit 3 Gold Medals that is a great result for New Zealand.
Oh an by the way, I still haven’t seen Mahe’s Gold Medal from #Rio2016 with the bullying control that SkyTV has over the footage…but that complaint is for another day.