China to Finish as Top Olympic Gold Medal Winner (Slideshow)

Li Yanping reports in bloomberg news:

Host China will finish as the top gold-medal winner for the first time in Olympic history, becoming the only nation other than the U.S. and Soviet Union to win the most titles at a Summer Games since 1948.

With a lead over the U.S. of 49 golds to 33 and only 13 events left, the Chinese team can’t be caught. Gold medals in canoeing and table tennis lifted China to the top of the tally today, the second-to-last day of the Beijing Games.

“It’s an honor for China to top the gold medal tally,” said Huo Liang, who contributed one of seven diving golds by winning the men’s synchronized 10-meter platform event with partner Lin Yue. “For 2012, it’s just to train hard and strive for the best.”

China, which has poured billions of dollars into sports in preparation for its first Olympics as host, ended the U.S. run of three straight Summer Games atop the gold-medal standings. The Chinese have won the most golds at an Olympics since the Soviet Union grabbed 55 at the 1988 Games in Seoul.

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The German magazine Stern published a series of photographs of children in sports schools in China to train them to become future champions. Parents give them to these schools at the age of 4-5 years.


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