China and the United States seem likely to do battle for the top spot in the 2012 Olympics medal count for the better part of a fortnight. On Day Three, though, the Chinese are extending their lead.
On Day Three, China was dominant in the morning and midday events, taking gold in men's 10m synchronized diving and women's 58kg weightlifting to push its gold medal tally to eight. That was as many gold medals as Italy, France, Russia, and South Korea have combined, and five more than the United States.
Then China scored a gold medal in men's team gymnastics, in a bit of an upset. The U.S. team had scored the top spot in qualifying, but finished off the podium in the event final.
The U.S. didn't fall in total medal count, though, scoring two bronze medals of its own. Marti Malloy took the U.S.'s second medal ever in women's judo, and the American team of David Boudia and Nick McCrory won bronze in men's 10m synchronized diving, giving the U.S. 13 medals, second only to China. America also leads the 2012 Olympics in bronze medals, with five, not that anyone's bragging about that.
But the American chance to overtake China will come shortly, and in the water, where it can add to its haul of eight medals. Ryan Lochte should win another medal, perhaps his second gold, in the 200m freestyle, Matt Grevers is the gold favorite in the 100m backstroke, the gold for women's 100m backstroke could end up around Missy Franklin's neck, and Breeja Larson and Rebecca Soni will likely vie with each other for gold and silver in the 100m breaststroke. Barring more upsets, the U.S. could have a slim lead in the total medal count by the end of Monday afternoon on the East Coast.
Here's a more complete look at current top five of the medal count:
- China, 15 (9 gold, 4 silver, 2 bronze)
- United States, 13 (3, 5, 5)
- Italy, 8 (2, 4, 2)
- Japan, 8 (1, 4, 3)
- France, 6 (2, 1, 3)
Other notables: Russia and South Korea are tied for sixth with five medals each, Great Britain trails the University of Florida with one silver and one bronze, pushed off the podium in men's team gymnastics, and Moldova's medal count remains one bronze.
You can find a complete medal tracker over at SI.com.
For complete coverage of the 2012 London Olympics, visit SB Nation's Summer Olympics hub.