Sochi helps Russia go top in 2014 Global Sports Nations Index

Sports Nations, Flushed with its success in hosting the winter Olympic and Paralympic Games in Sochi, Russia has established itself as the world’s number one sporting nation in 2014. China, top in 2012 and 2013, has dropped to fourth, below Canada and the UK. Canada has now moved up into second place, leapfrogging the UK, which remains in third place.

The Global Sports Nations Index 2014 produced by Sportcal, the leading global sports market intelligence agency, is based on in-depth analysis of over 450 major multi-sport games and world championships over a rolling 12-year period, covering six years in the past (including the current year) and six years in the future.

The 2014 index is based on the period 2009 through to 2020.

Having successfully hosted the winter Olympics and Paralympics in Sochi this year, Russia has accumulated over 45,000 points, placing it well ahead of Canada and the UK.

Top 10 Global Sports Nations 2014

Rank +/- Nation Index Total

1 +1 Russia 45,589

2 +2 Canada 39,351

3 = United Kingdom 37,421

4 -3 China 36,881

5 +2 USA 31,844

6 -1 Italy 28,990

7 -1 Germany 28,488

8 +1 Brazil 25,874

9 +1 Korea 24,207

10 -2 France 24,086

The winter Olympics in Sochi were the most expensive winter Olympics ever and although there remains some doubt as to the true cost of the games they were also by far the largest winter Olympics to date, with over 2,800 athletes from 85 nations participating in 98 disciplines.

Alexander Zhukov, President of the Russian Olympic Committee commented “The Olympic and Paralympic Games have given a powerful stimulus for the development of sport in our country. Many sports events held in Russia in recent years have been a great success and have brought the country to the top tier of world sport. It’s an important part of the Olympic legacy to promote both mass and professional sport and at the same time have a positive impact on the image of Russia.”

Canada, like Russia, has hosted the winter Olympics in the past six years, in 2010 in Vancouver, and will have hosted 42 world championships and multi-sport games, mostly winter sports, between 2009 and 2020.

Next year, 2015, will be a big year for Canada, which is slated to host the Pan American Games in Toronto and the Fifa Women’s World Cup which will be hosted throughout Canada, as well as four other world championships.

“We are very proud of our progress as a nation in terms of organizing and hosting sports events. Canada continues to be a global leader in the sports world thanks in large part to our deep sports culture, the passion of our citizens and the quality of our infrastructure” said Marcel Aubut, President of the Canadian Olympic Committee.

The UK, in third place, has followed up its success in hosting the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games with a range of world championships and multi-sport events through to 2019.

The UK has secured 12 major events from 2014 onwards, including the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow this year, the IRB Rugby World Cup in 2015, the UCI Track World Championships in 2016 and the IAAF World Athletic Championships in 2017.

Commenting on the 2014 index Simon Morton, Director of Major Events and International Relations for UK Sport said: “I am delighted to see that the UK continues to be placed among the top nations for hosting world class sport in this important global index. The UK remains committed to providing International Federations and rights holders with a world-class environment to host their major events.”

China has been the leading global sports nation for the past two years, thanks to the large number of events it hosted in 2008, including the Beijing Olympic and Paralympic Games.

With the year 2008 dropping out of the index calculations for 2014, China loses the most number of points for that year and drops from first place to fourth place.

China is bidding to host the winter Olympics in 2022, one of the few events it is looking to attract beyond 2015. Beijing is one of five cities bidding for the games (the others are Almaty in Kazakhstan, Krakow in Poland, Lviv in Ukraine and Oslo in Norway).

USA has made the biggest move in the Global Sports Nations Index for 2014, moving up two places from seventh to fifth place. In recent months it has secured world championships in biathlon, trampoline and tumbling and triathlon and has moved from sixth to third place for the 2015-2020 period.

Top 10 Global Sports Nations Future Index (2015-2020)

Rank +/- Nation Index Total

1 = Russia 17,220

2 +1 Canada 16,129

3 +3 USA 15,660

4 +1 United Kingdom 13,090

5 -3 Brazil 12,895

6 +6 Japan 10,596

7 +1 Korea 10,216

8 -4 China 8,405

9 +2 Germany 8,237

10 +7 Austria 6,481

With a bid for the 2024 Olympic Games on the cards, it seems that USA is re-engaging with the world sports community.

As Russia, Canada, and USA all move up places in the Global Sports Nations Index for 2014, the leading western European nations, with the exception of the UK, which remains in third, all drop places.

Italy drops from fifth to sixth, Germany from sixth to seventh, France from eighth to 10th, Spain from 11th to 12th and the Netherlands from 12th to 13th.

This situation is even more marked for the period 2015-2020 with Italy dropping to 16th, France from 10th to 11th, Spain from seventh to 17th and the Netherlands from ninth to 24th. Germany and the UK are the only western European countries to show an increase, with Germany up from 11th to ninth and the UK up from fifth to fourth.

Significant movers upwards in the Index include South Korea, which moves up one place from 10th to ninth and is well positioned for the period 2015-2020 in seventh position. Having secured the winter Olympic and Paralympic Games for Pyeongchang in 2018 it will also host the 17th Asian Games in 2014 and the Summer Universiade in 2015.

Japan is also, not surprisingly, one of the big movers in 2014, up from 13th to 11th place having secured the Olympic Games in 2020 for Tokyo.

Dmitry Chernyshenko, President of the Sochi 2014 Olympic Organising Committee, said of the Global Sports Nations Index for 2014: “Our objective for bringing the Winter Games to Russia for the first time was not just to host a sensational two-week celebration, but to put Russia permanently and prominently back on the world’s winter sports map. Thanks to Sochi 2014, we now have the world-class facilities and expertise in place to serve athletes at every level, from grassroots to the global elite. Our focus now must turn to making the most of this once-in-a-generation legacy opportunity, and hopefully competing for top spot in the Global Sports Nations Index for many years to come!” —- Sportcal

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