Play the Olympics 2020 Gold Rush with your friends

  • Updated
  • By Max Wright
Olympic Gold Rush sweepstakes
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Looking for a fun way to get involved with the Olympics with your friends this year? During this year's exciting Euros tournament, a sweepstakes was a great way of upping the stakes and giving you a reason to follow teams that aren't your own. But how can you re-create that feeling with the world's biggest contest of athletic ability?

This game we're affectionately going to refer to as the "Gold Rush" involves any number of people, with each person randomly assigned 3 countries and winning points based on the number of medals that those countries win during the Olympic Games!

Simply gather your mates to explain the rules, or send this link to the group chat and get involved!

Step 1: Invite your mates and choose your numbers

This step is easy, grab all your mates and chuck them in a group chat (or use a group chat you already have) and send them the rules, but all they need to do at this point is randomly choose 3 numbers between 1-30. If you are choosing to play for money (which will raise the stakes significantly), choose how much each person should pay to enter and decide how the fund will be split among first, second and third place.

People are free to choose any numbers they like; you don't need to worry about duplicates with this game as it's about the total number of medals won, unlike a normal sweepstake where each person only gets one team.

As there are over 200 teams taking part in the games this year, each with a wildly different number of athletes, we've put together a list of the top 30 countries who have the most athletes for you to pick from at the bottom of this page. This just means nobody taking part gets stuck with Brunei, which would be a massive handicap as they will only be taking part in 2 events.

Step 2: Draw your countries (and start to regret your choices...)

This step is very important! There's a couple of ways you can organise this to make it fair and random, but whichever way you choose it's best to do it on a video call, just to show that there's no funny business going on.

Option A: Draw countries out of a hat

This option requires a little extra work, as you will need to write down all 30 countries onto pieces of paper and pull them out of a hat at random, assigning them numbers from 1-30.

This is definitely the more fun way to do this, as everyone will already know the numbers they've picked and you can all laugh at people who get nations who aren't known for winning medals, or be jealous of the people who end up with Team GB.

Option B: Randomly generate numbers and assign them alphabetically

This idea is a lot easier to organise, as you can use our list of the 30 biggest Olympic 2020 teams below and use Google's random number generator to pull a number between 1-30. This way, you can go down the list to assign the numbers in alphabetical order (remembering to re-roll any time the same number is generated more than once).

When you have all 30 teams matched up with a number, all of your players will know what teams they need to follow during the games! Now would be the time to ask for your money back if you aren't happy with your choices...

Step 3: Keep track of the medals won (and realise you've got no chance of winning...)

Now the games are on, it's time to keep your eyes peeled for your assigned teams and hope they win medals! The easiest way to do this is probably in a spreadsheet, so set up a quick google sheets to keep track of the teams, the medals they win and the number of points all your players have.

How you award points is up to you too, you might want to set a simple rule that each medal is worth 1 point, no matter where the team finishes (which will be easier to keep track of). However if you're feeling brave, you could adopt the following point system:

Medal

Points

Gold

3

Silver

2

Bronze

1

Disqualified

-1

This will keep things more interesting, by rewarding gold medal winners with more points and penalising any players who are unlucky enough to be disqualified from an event. If you don't want to track disqualifications. feel free to ignore that!

However you choose to award points, try and keep on top of it so that people can see their total as we go! To make this easier for you, we have created a score tracking spreadsheet that automatically calculates the points for each country as you enter the medals they win! 

Step 4: Award your prizes (and never speak to your friends again...)

The 2020 Olympic Games officially end on the 8th of August 2021, so why not use the closing ceremony as a chance to have one of your own? You can do a final tally of everyone's points and award a gold, silver and bronze medal to your first, second and third place winners. If you played for money, now is a good chance to award your prizes too!

In the event of a tie in your top 3, you can split the prize money evenly between the drawing players, or you can work out who wins based on a metric of your choosing: who won more gold medals, who was disqualified the least etc. However you do it, be sure to keep it fair so no arguments happen!

By the end of the game, there may be some bruised egos, some disappointed players and some people who are adamant that another team cheated to win, but you will have all been more involved in the Olympics than you ever have (unless you happen to be friends with Tom Daley or Max Whitlock...).

Enjoy the 2020 Olympic Games!

We hope you enjoy this year's games after a long delay, and we hope that you enjoy it even more by taking part in a Gold Rush Sweepstakes game. We have a whole series of Olympics content this week, which includes a custom made trump cards game, a list of our favourite sports-themed slot games and more! 

If you liked this article, or think that you have some friends who would love to host their own Olympics 2020 Sweepstakes with a twist, please share this article with them! If you have any feedback, you can reach us over on Twitter and we'll respond to all your questions and queries.

Resources

Our Olympics Gold Rush score sheet

To make tracking everyone's scores easier, we've created an easy to use spreadsheet in google sheets that you can duplicate (file > make a copy) and edit with your friends' names and countries. The sheet has been set up so that you can easily track the total scores of all countries just by updating the number of medals that each country has won. 

If you're feeling savvy in the art of the spreadsheet, feel free to set up each player's total score with the formula =sum(QX+QY+QZ) (where X, Y and Z relate to the row that each of their countries are in). This will update the total for each player automatically, making the whole thing run a lot smoother!

Once you've made your sheet, you can easily share the link around to all your mates so they can keep track of how well they're doing and how close they are to victory!

View Score Sheet

30 biggest olympic teams

Country

Number of participants for 2020

Argentina

174

Australia

476

Belgium

121

Brazil

311

Canada

370

China

406

Denmark

109

Egypt

133

France

403

Germany

425

Great Britain

376

Hungary

167

India

125

Ireland

116

Italy

371

Japan

552

Mexico

164

Netherlands

275

New Zealand

223

Poland

210

ROC (Russia)

329

Romania

101

South Africa

177

South Korea

236

Spain

320

Sweden

134

Switzerland

106

Turkey

108

Ukraine

155

United States

613