Nations With Most Olympic Medals But No Golds

So which nations have won the most Olympic medals but never managed a gold medal? For many years, the answer to this question was Mongolia, which had won 15 medals through the 2000 Olympics, before breaking thru with 2 gold medals at Athens in 2004.

But the answer is now The Philippines, which has won 9 medals – 2 silvers and 7 bronzes, but has never won a gold medal. Well, in a sense. If we include demonstration sports, in 1988, Arianne Cerdena won the women’s bowling demonstration event at Seoul. But in full medal events, no Filipino has ever mounted the top step of the podium.

Here are all the nations that have won 2 or more Olympic medals without winning a gold medal:

NOC Gold Silver Bronze Medals
The Philippines - 2 7 9
Puerto Rico - 2 6 8
Moldova - 2 5 7
Malaysia - 3 3 6
Namibia - 4 - 4
Iceland - 2 2 4
Lebanon - 2 2 4
Singapore - 2 2 4
Bohemia - 1 3 4
Ghana - 1 3 4
Qatar - - 4 4
Independent Olympic Athletes - 1 2 3
Kyrgyzstan - 1 2 3
Saudi Arabia - 1 2 3
Tajikistan - 1 2 3
Sri Lanka - 2 - 2
Tanzania - 2 - 2
Vietnam - 2 - 2
Haiti - 1 1 2
United Arab Republic - 1 1 2
Zambia - 1 1 2
Afghanistan - - 2 2
Kuwait - - 2 2
West Indies Federation - - 2 2

Two “nations” above no longer exist and will not be moving off the list. The United Arab Republic was a team formed from Egypt and Syria in 1960. Syria left the alliance in 1961, but Egypt continued to use the name at the 1964 and 1968 Olympics. The West Indies Federation competed only in 1960, with athletes from Jamaica, Trinidad & Tobago, and Barbados.

If we limit ourselves only to the Summer Olympics, the above list still holds – none of those nations have won a Winter Olympic medal. If we look at only the Winter Olympics, the leader is Latvia, which has won 7 Winter Olympic medals – 4 silver and 3 bronze – without winning gold. The Winter list of those winning 2 or more medals without a gold is as follows:

NOC Gold Silver Bronze Medals
Latvia - 4 3 7
Hungary - 2 4 6
Yugoslavia - 3 1 4
Luxembourg - 2 - 2
Korea DPR (North) - 1 1 2

Now breaking this down by gender, the following nations have won the most medals in men’s event without winning gold, which is again very similar to the overall and summer lists given above, although now Colombia is tied with The Philippines:

NOC Gold Silver Bronze Medals
Colombia - 4 5 9
The Philippines - 2 7 9
Puerto Rico - 2 6 8
Moldova - 2 4 6
Malaysia - 3 2 5
Serbia - 1 4 5
Namibia - 4 - 4
Lebanon - 2 2 4
Ghana - 1 3 4
Liechtenstein - 1 3 4
Qatar - - 4 4
Iceland - 2 1 3
Bohemia - 1 2 3
Kyrgyzstan - 1 2 3
Tanzania - 2 - 2
Haiti - 1 1 2
Syria - 1 1 2
Tajikistan - 1 1 2
United Arab Republic - 1 1 2
Zambia - 1 1 2
Afghanistan - - 2 2
Kuwait - - 2 2
West Indies Federation - - 2 2

Among women, Argentina is a big leader, with 11 female medals, but no golds. The full list is as follows:

NOC Gold Silver Bronze Medals
Argentina - 5 6 11
Mongolia - 1 2 3
Singapore - 1 2 3
India - - 3 3
Independent Olympic Athletes - 1 1 2
Venezuela - - 2 2

And just to be fully anal about this, we’ll look at medals won in mixed events without a gold. Once again, Argentina leads this list with 5:

NOC Gold Silver Bronze Medals
Argentina - 3 2 5
Portugal - 3 1 4
Bulgaria - 1 2 3
Mexico - - 3 3
Indonesia - 2 - 2
Peru - 2 - 2
Cuba - 1 1 2
Ireland - 1 1 2
The Ukraine - 1 1 2
Saudi Arabia - - 2 2

Will be fun to see which of these nations come off these lists in Rio and Pyeongchang.

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