GB projected to miss medal target, win 15 golds at Tokyo 2020

GB projected to miss medal target, win 15 golds at Tokyo 2020

23/07/2019 at 08:45Updated 23/07/2019 at 09:45

Great Britain are projected to slip from second to fifth in the medal table at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

Overall, they are tipped to win 43 medals (including 13 silver and 15 bronze) next summer, 24 fewer than they managed in Brazil where they pipped China to second spot in the table.

The United States are expected to dominate, with their 126 medals (51 golds) seeing them secure the most medals for the seventh successive Summer Olympics. China (38 golds) are expected to finish ahead of hosts Japan (29), while Russia (17) will pip GB into fourth.

The forecast is dynamic and considers events as they take place, meaning it will almost certainly change between now and when the Games officially begin on July 24, 2020.

Gracenote: Predicted Tokyo 2020 medal table


Dina Asher-Smith is the only athlete tipped to win two individual medals, with Gracenote predicting her to triumph in the 200m and take bronze over 100m, while she could add a third in the 4x100m relay.

Laura Muir is expected to clinch her first global title over 1500m, with the men’s 4x100m squad anticipated to replicate their storming run from the 2017 World Championships in London and add a third gold on the track.

Video - Eurosport Advent Calendar: Watch Dina Asher-Smith's golden sprint hat-trick


Elsewhere, the study claims world record holder Adam Peaty will defend his 100m breaststroke title, Max Whitlock will star again on the pommel horse and Bianca Walkden will upgrade her taekwondo bronze from Rio in the +67kg category to gold.

GB will also continue their dominance in the team pursuit, winning both titles, but…

Sport Event Athlete
Athletics 1500m Laura Muir
Athletics 200m Dina Asher-Smith
Athletics 4x100m relay GB men's squad
Canoe Sprint K1 200m Liam Heath
Cycling - Track Team pursuit GB men's squad
Cycling - Track Team pursuit GB women's squad
Equestrian - Eventing Individual Canter (Allstar B)
Equestrian - Eventing Team GB mixed squad
Gymnastics - Artistic Pommel horse Max Whitlock
Sailing 470 Hannah Mills and Eilidh McIntyre
Sailing 49er Dylan Fletcher and Stuart Bithell
Shooting Trap Matthew Coward-Holley
Swimming 100m breaststroke Adam Peaty
Swimming 50m freestyle Ben Proud
Taekwondo Heavyweight +67kg Bianca Walkden

GB's projected gold medals at Tokyo 2020 (Source: Gracenote)


…surprisingly, neither Jason Kenny nor Laura Kenny are predicted to win an individual medal, although both will likely feature in the team pursuit squads, with Gracenote’s study suggesting there will be little success in track cycling.

The golden couple boast 10 Olympic golds between them, with Jason chasing a medal that would make him GB’s most-decorated Olympian in history and Laura already established as the nation’s most successful woman.

Katie Archibald, Elinor Barker, Ethan Hayter and Callum Skinner are among the other cyclists overlooked.

Mo Farah, still contemplating a return to the track in time for Tokyo after an inauspicious start to his marathon career, is also absent from the list, as is two-time Olympic champion Andy Murray as he continues his rehabilitation from hip surgery.

"The main reason for the fall in potential British medals appears to be the decline in success in track cycling, gymnastics and rowing which produced 22 medals at the 2016 Olympics but are now forecast to contribute only seven medals to the British total at Tokyo 2020," says Simon Gleave, Head of Sports Analysis at Gracenote.

"We are however a year away from the Olympics and with British athletes and teams currently ranked 4th by the Gracenote Virtual Medal Table in 14 events, 5th in 19 and 6th in another 16, small performance improvements will lead to a rise in medal expectations by the time the 2020 Summer Games start on 24 July 2020."

Gold medalist Jason Kenny (GBR) of Britain poses with his gilfriend, women's omnium gold medalist Laura Trott (GBR) of Britain.

Gold medalist Jason Kenny (GBR) of Britain poses with his gilfriend, women's omnium gold medalist Laura Trott (GBR) of Britain.Reuters


Games Rank Gold Silver Bronze Total medals
Rio 2016 2nd 27 23 17 67
London 2012 3rd 29 17 19 65
Beijing 2008 4th 19 13 17 49
Athens 2004 10th 9 9 12 30
Sydney 2000 10th 11 10 7 28
Atlanta 1996 36th 1 8 6 15


  • After falling to 70 medals in 2016, China is expected to bounce back slightly in Tokyo to cement second place for the third successive Summer Olympics.
  • While Japan is expected to improve on its Rio 2016 medal total by 63%, this is not likely enough for the host nation to genuinely challenge China for second place.
  • Russia is set to improve upon its total of 55 medals won at Rio 2016. Still, the Russian team is in a battle with host nation Japan for the third position on the medal table. It should be noted that the Russian athletics team is still banned from competition so this total could improve further.
  • Great Britain's medal total is expected to drop significantly from 2016 so their best hope is to break into the top-five rather than the top-three they occupied in the last two Olympics.
  • Tokyo 2020 will be the first Olympic Games in which fewer than 50% of medal events will be open to men only. The proportion of women's events rises for the 10th Summer Games in succession.
  • Japan is expected to increase its medal total by 63% in comparison to the last Olympic Games. This would be the biggest improvement by a host nation since Spain at Barcelona 1992.

Facts courtesy of Gracenote