Per Capita Cup 2012: an in-depth analysis

The All Blacks and the haka

 Which is the world’s sportiest nation?

GSN has the answer through the Per Capita ranking, which measures how involved any nation is in sports: how many inhabitants does any nation need to score one GSN Global Cup Point?

The number one country in sports, per capita, is Jamaica with 4600 Jamaicans per point, only fractionally better than New Zealand (4788), while Trinidad and Tobago is third with 7705.
Interestingly, the rest of the top ten nations in the Per Capita Cup are all European, the only exception Australia in 9th place.
One reason for this peculiar geographic distribution is the success of (Northern) European nations in Winter Sports, which for most of these countries count for over 50% of the number of sports in which they score points.
At the other end of the scale, Caribbean nations perform brilliantly in a very limited number of sports only: only 2 for Jamaica (98,3% of points coming from Athletics, the remainder Swimming), 3 for Trinidad & Tobago.
Elsewhere, versatility is the name of the game, as the table of the number of sports with points for the Per Capita Cup top ten countries shows:
  1. Australia (31 sports)
  2. Sweden (25)
  3. Netherlands (22)
  4. Norway (21)
  5. New Zealand (20)
  6. Switzerland (15)
  7. Finland (13)
  8. Slovenia (12)
Finally, an honourable mention for three of these countries for leading the Global Cup in at least one sport this year: for New Zealand the sport is Rugby Union, for the Netherlands it’s Speed skating and for Norway it’s Cross Country Skiing.