Olympics medal count: China edges back out in front of US Wednesday

The US scored big Tuesday at the London Olympics when Michael Phelps and the women's gymnastics team brought home historic wins. But the Chinese climbed back on top of the medal chart Wednesday.

Kai Pfaffencbach/Reuters
Bronze medallist from left to right: Natalie Dell, Kara Kohler, Megan Kalmoe and Adrienne Martelli of the US pose during the victory ceremony after the women's quadruple sculls at Eton Dorney during the London Games August 1.
Rich Clabaugh/Staff

The US dominated day four of the London Olympics, with outstanding performances by swimming superstar Michael Phelps and the "Fab Five" women's gymnastics team. The women won the team gold medal, and Phelps won silver in the men's 200-meter butterfly, and gold with his team in the men's four by 200-meter freestyle relay.

However, by Wednesday afternoon, China regained the medal lead, 30-29. China was also still ahead in the gold medal count, with 17 to the US's 12.

Phelps and the women's gymnastics team may have been the main attraction on Tuesday, but what really helped put the US over the top were three solid performances on Tuesday and Wednesday morning by little-known athletes.

On Tuesday Caitlin Leverenz, 21, from Tucson, Ariz., took the the bronze medal in the women's 200-meter individual medley. She may have been outperformed by Chinese phenomenon Ye Shiwen (who set a new Olympic record in the race) and Aussie Alicia Coutts, but Leverenz, who narrowly missed the cut off for the Beijing Games, has nothing to be ashamed of, winning her first Olympic medal against the world's best.

On Wednesday morning Boise, Idaho resident Kristin Armstrong (no relation to Lance Armstrong) won the gold medal in the women's cycling road race. Armstrong, 38, originally trained as a triathlete, but has since proven her cycling chops, winning her first gold in Beijing

A US rowing team also medalled Wednesday morning. Kara Kohler, Megan Kalmoe, Adrienne Martelli, and Natalie Dell won the bronze in the women's quadruple sculls. The rowing and cycling medals were the first for the US in those sports at the London Games.

There were plenty of medals up for grabs for the US Wednesday afternoon.

Danell Leyva captured a bronze medal in the gymnastics all-around finals. Teammate John Orozco finished ninth in the competition.

US swimmers competed in four races Wednesday afternoon, the men's 200-meter breaststroke, the women's 200-meter butterfly, the men's 100-meter freestyle, and the women's four by 200-meter freestyle relay. Dana Vollmer, who won the gold medal and broke the world record in the women's 100-meter butterfly, helped the Americans to a gold medal in the women's relay, and Nathan Adrian edged out Australia's James Magnussen for gold in the men's 100-meter freestyle.

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