Canada sets auspicious mark at Pan Am Games

Canada sets auspicious mark at Pan Am Games

How well are the 2015 Pan Am Games going for the host country? Canada has already surpassed its gold medal total from 2011 - and we’re only on day five.

TORONTO, ON - JULY 15: Ellie Black of Canada smiles as she wears her gold medal in the artistic gymnastic women's beam final during the 2015 Pan Am Games at the Toronto Coliseum on July 15, 2015 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - JULY 15: Ellie Black of Canada smiles as she wears her gold medal in the artistic gymnastic women's beam final during the 2015 Pan Am Games at the Toronto Coliseum on July 15, 2015 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

With Lynda Kiejko’s gold medal triumph on Wednesday, Canada has reached the top of the podium 31 times at the 2015 Games. In 2011, Canada tallied 30 gold medals, part of a haul of 119 medals that placed the national team fifth on the overall medal table. In 2015, Canada currently sits first, with the U.S. nipping at its heels.

In totally non-Canadian fashion, 31 of 70 medals in 2015 have been gold - that’s 44%. By comparison, only 25 per cent of medals in 2011 were gold. In 1999, 33 per cent of Canadian medals were gold, Canada’s best ratio of gold-to-medal in Pan Am history. It helps erase Canada’s reputation as a bronze-happy nation. In fact, Canada has managed to maintain the overall medal lead to date despite 6 fewer bronze medals than the U.S.

The strong start put Canada within reach of its best-ever Pan Am medal performance. In 1999 in Winnipeg, the host country racked up 64 gold medals and 196 total medals, which put Canada third overall. Canada has traditionally performed well in wrestling, water skiing and fencing, which have yet to award medals, and the high-profile team sports haven’t reached their medal rounds yet either.

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