Can US Catch China in Gold Medal Race? China Still Leads at the Tokyo Games

The 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics are halfway over, that means swimming is finished and the track and field events are just beginning. It also means a new look at the medals race, for both the amount of gold medals won by the top countries and the overall total.

With seven days of events remaining, China still holds the most gold medals, followed by the United States, Japan and Australia.

The U.S. leads the overall medal race with 59, followed by China, which is eight medals behind.

Here are the medals races:

Gold medals won at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics (through Sunday afternoon)
24 — China
20 — United States
17 — Japan
14 — Australia
12 — Russian Olympic Committee (ROC)
10 — Great Britain

Total medals through Sunday
59 — United States
51 — China
44 — ROC
32 — Great Britain
31 — Australia
31 — Japan

Of the 20 gold medals won by Team USA, 11 of them came in swimming and three in shooting sports. The women's gymnastics team only has one gold so far (Sunisa Lee in the all-around), and the softball team lost to Japan in the gold medal game. The U.S.'s Carissa Moore won women's surfing in its inaugural Games appearance. Another first-time sport was 3-on-3 basketball, and the American women won gold.

China and US Swimming
The world record breaking China team of Junxuan Yang, Yufei Zhang, Bingjie Li and Muhan Tang on the podium with their gold medals watched by Katie Ledecky of the United States after their gold medal win in the 4x 200m relay for women during the Swimming Finals at the Tokyo Aquatic Centre at the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympic Games on July 29, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images

China has won five weightlifting gold medals, followed by four in diving, three in shooting and two so far in table tennis. The Chinese have a chance to win two more table tennis gold medals (men's and women's team finals) later this week, in addition to other individual sports.

The U.S. is expected to win gold in women's basketball, and the men could win gold if they get hot during the knockout round.

The U.S. has the most silver medals with 23, of which 12 were won by the swimmers and divers.

​​The United States has won the most medals—and most gold medals—at each of the past two Olympics (2012 London and 2016 Rio). China had the second-most medals in 2016, a whopping 50 medals behind the U.S., but only 20 fewer gold medals.

In London, the United States had eight more golds than China, and just 13 more overall medals.

The last time the Americans did not win the gold medal battle was 2008, when China led the way with 48 golds to 36 by the Americans. And that includes American Michael Phelps winning eight of those at the Beijing Games.

The United States is the only country to amass at least 1,000 gold medals in the history of the modern Olympics, something the Americans accomplished at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Summer Games. Prior to Tokyo, the Americans had won 1,022 gold medals (2,522 overall medals), which is more then the next two countries combined: Russia and Germany—which includes the Soviet Union and combined East and West Germany.