What Are The Top 10 Olympic Games Betting Highlights?

By Ian John
July 1, 2024

The 2024 Summer Olympic Games will take place in Paris. In 2028, the venue will be Los Angeles, and in 2032, Brisbane, Australia, will host the event.

And in all these events, and any future Olympics tournament, you can expect that there will be huge global interest in the most popular betting markets for each Olympic Games.

In this post, we are going to take a closer look at the top ten betting highlights of the Olympic Games.

Olympic Games

These are the marquee events of the Games. The ones that draw the biggest global audience to watch and, as a result, often enjoy a high percentage of bets made on the event.

Being a quadrennial event, Olympic Games betting isn’t always available at sites like bet365 Sport. However, once the starting date of the games approaches, you will find an increasing number of Olympic sports and events to bet on.

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In this post, we are going to pick our top 10 Olympic events that are blockbusters for the bookies and of most interest to punters.

Events shown include both the men’s and women’s competitions (where applicable).

Our list runs from number 10 down to number 1, the final selection being the event we feel is the best betting option at any summer Olympic Games.

Top 10 Olympic Games Betting Highlights

10. Olympic Games Boxing Tournaments

Olympic Games

Boxing has been a key part of the Olympics since 1904, with only one games (1912 in Stockholm) without boxing. Since 2012, a women’s boxing tournament has been held alongside the traditional men’s event.

In 2024, there will be seven events for male competitors, with six for women. That is one fewer men’s tournament and one more female tournament compared to the 2020 games.  A total of 13 gold medals are up for grabs in the boxing tournament.

Men’s weight classes have been set at: –

  • 51kg – Flyweight
  • 57kg – Featherweight
  • 63.5kg – Lightweight
  • 71kg – Welterweight
  • 80kg – Middleweight/Super Middleweight
  • 92kg – Heavyweight
  • 92kg+ – Super Heavyweight

Women’s weight classes are: –

  • 50kg – Flyweight
  • 54kg – Bantamweight
  • 57kg – Featherweight
  • 60kg – Lightweight
  • 66kg – Welterweight
  • 75kg – Middleweight

Historically, the United States has won the most gold medals with 50 and the most total boxing medals with 117. Ahead of Cuba (41 golds, 78 total medals) and Great Britain (20 golds, 62 total medals).

Famous former Olympic Boxing Gold Medal winners include:

  • Anthony Joshua
  • Oleksandr Usyk
  • George Foreman
  • Katie Taylor
  • Joe Frazier
  • Lennox Lewis
  • Oscar De La Hoya
  • Pernell Whittaker
  • Claressa Shields
  • Vasiliy Lomachenko
  • Muhammed Ali

9. Decathlon / Heptathlon

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Multi-events at the Olympics are always popular. That could includes events such as the Triathlon, modern Pentathlon and Three-Day Eventing. However, from a betting perspective, there’s no doubt that the men’s decathlon and women’s heptathlon have a special pre-eminence at the Olympics.

In the men’s decathlon, competitors battle it out for points across ten different events over two days of intense competition. By the end of the gruelling competition, the decathlete with the most points wins gold.

The women’s pentathlon sees women compete over seven events in total, four on the first day, three on the second, with a points scoring method similar to the men’s decathlon used to decide the winner.

The events that comprise the decathlon and pentathlon are shown below:

Men’s Decathlon Events

Day One

  • 100 metres
  • Long Jump
  • Shot Put
  • High Jump
  • 400 metres

Day Two

  • 110 metres hurdles
  • Discus
  • Pole Vault
  • Javelin
  • 1,500 metres

Women’s Pentathlon Events

Day One

  • 100 metres hurdles
  • High Jump
  • Shot Put
  • 200 metres

Day Two

  • Long Jump
  • Javelin
  • 800 metres

Famous decathletes and pentathletes to have won gold medals include: – Daley Thompson, Jessica Ennis, Jackie Joyner-Kersee, Ashton Eaton, Damian Warner, Nafi Thiam and Denise Lewis.

8. Men’s and Women’s 400m Finals

The 400 metres, or one lap of the Olympic track, is the longest and most arduous of the three sprint races, with athletes having to combine sprint speed with endurance.

It is arguably one of the simplest races to follow, and its close relations, the 400m relay and 400m hurdles, are also very worthwhile Olympic Games betting options too.

Athletes compete through a series of rounds, with a certain number of high finishers in each race, plus a number of fastest losers making it through each round until there are just eight athletes left to contest the final.

Famous 400m gold medalists in either the men’s and women’s events include: – Michael Johnson, Wayde van Niekerk, Marie-Jose Perec, Kirani James, Shaunae Miller-Uibo, Eric Liddell, Alberto Juantorena, LaShawn Merritt, Steven Gardiner, Marita Koch, Valerie Brisco-Hooks, Cathy Freeman, Christine Ohuruogu and Sanya Richards-Ross.

7. Olympic Games Golf Tournaments

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Although golf was a part of the first two modern Olympic Games in 1900 and 1904, it did not reappear as an Olympic Sport until the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Currently, there is a stroke-play tournament contested over four rounds for male golfers and the same tournament set up, on the same course, for women players.

Around 120 players compete in the tournament, with their qualification decided by their official world golf ranking and nationality. No more than four players per country are allowed to compete in the tournament.

The winners of the gold medals in the most recent two Olympic Golf tournaments for men and women were Justin Rose and Inbee Park in 2016 in Rio and Xander Schauffele and Nelly Korda in 2020 in Tokyo.

6. Olympic Games Cycling Events & Finals

Cycling has been a part of every modern Olympic Games since 1896. This broad category of events now includes Mountain Bike racing, BMX Racing, freestyle BMX alongside road races and cycling in the velodrome.

There are 11 cycling events for men to compete for and the same number for women, with 22 gold medals available in total.

Great Britain has been the best ranked team at the past four Olympic Games and Team GB sits atop of the cycling Olympic Medals chart with 78 in total, 33 of which have been gold. Ten more than France who have 68 total medals (28 gold).

Cycling events in the Velodrome for men and women include: Keirin, Madison, Omnium, Team Pursuit, Individual Sprint and Team Sprint.

There is also an Individual Road Race and Individual Time Trial for both sexes, plus Mountain Biking Cross Country, BMX Racing and BMX Freestyle medals available to both male and female competitors.

Famous cycling gold medallists include Chris Boardman, Sir Chris Hoy, Sir Bradley Wiggins, Jason Kenny, Laura Kenny, Ed Clancy, Victoria Pendleton and Steven Burke.

5. Men’s & Women’s Singles Tennis Tournament Winners

Tennis was a feature of the first Olympics in 1896 to the 1924 games and after being a demonstration sport in 1968 and 1984, it returned to the Olympics in 1988 and has remained ever since.

There are five gold medals available in Olympic tennis. Mens and Women’s Singles and Doubles offer four, with the Mixed Doubles offering the fifth gold medal.

Previous winners of the Gold Medal in the singles tournaments include Steffi Graf, Jennifer Capriati, Lindsay Davenport, Venus Williams, Justine Henin-Hardenne, Elene Dementieva, Serena Williams, Monica Puig and Belinda Bencic in the womens.

In the men’s tournament past winners include Alex Zverev, Andy Murray (twice), Rafa Nadal, Nicolas Massu, Yevgeny Kafelnikov, Andre Agassi, Marc Rosset and Miroslav Mecir.

4. Men’s & Women’s 800m and 1500m Finals

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The middle distances have always been a huge attraction for Olympic Games fans and these events have been some of the most popular races watched in many modern games.

Competitors will compete over a series of heats until just a field of finalists remains.

Athletes will often double-up in these events and that has produced a number of athletes that have won gold in both events, or gold in one and medalled in another.

Some famous middle-distance gold medalists over the years include:

  • Kelly Holmes (800m & 1500m)
  • Sebastian Coe (1500m x 2)
  • Jakob Ingebritsen (1500m)
  • Steve Ovett (800m)
  • David Rudisha (800m)
  • Hicham El Guerrouh (1500m)
  • Peter Rono (1500m)
  • Faith Kipyegon (1500m)
  • Athing Mu (800m)
  • Maria Mutola (800m)

3. Olympic Games Football Finals

There has only been one Olympic Games in the modern era that did not feature football, the 1932 games.

The current Olympics sees two gold medals available, one each for the winning men’s and women’s national teams in the tournament.

The men’s tournament tends to feature the National U23 team, with three overage players nominated to take part. The women’s tournament features the full national teams from each of the qualified nations.

Each tournament comprises of 16 teams in the mens event, 12 in the womens who compete in a series of group games. Eight teams qualify for the quarterfinals for each tournament and from then on it is a straight knockout with extra time and penalties used to decide the winner.

In the women’s soccer event, the United States have won four gold medals, with Norway, Germany and Canada winning one each.

Despite rarely fielding a team in modern years, Great Britain has the shared most goals in the men’s football event with Hungary, winning three gold medals.  Brazil, Argentina, the Soviet Union and Uruguay have twice been Olympic gold medal winners.

13 other teams have won gold at the games: – Yugoslavia, Spain, Poland, East Germany, Nigeria, Czechoslovakia, France, Italy, Sweden, Mexico, Belgium, Canada and Cameroon.

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2. Olympic Games – Most Gold Medals/Most Medals/Total Gold Medals

Betting on which countries will win the most gold medals or the most medals at an Olympic Games is always a very popular futures betting market.

Admittedly, the choices in this market are usually between two very low-priced favourites, the United States and China, and then usually it is the host nation and a handful of other countries that are the considerable outsiders beyond the two Olympic giants.

Despite a lack of genuine options, this is still a very popular market to bet on for those that follow the medals table at any Olympic Games.

1.Men’s and Women’s 100m and 200m Sprint Finals

There’s no doubt that the blue-ribbon event of the Olympic games is the 100m and 200m sprint finals for men and women.

It is the event that has seen numerous athletes become world famous and is responsible for some of the most breathtaking Olympic Games moments in history.

Athletes work their way through rounds until they qualify for the final of the event.

As both events are sprints, many athletes double up in the events. The very best have won gold in both events, sometimes at the same Olympics and even in consecutive Olympic Games.

Some of the most famous 100m and 200m Olympic Gold medal winners include: –

Men

  • Usain Bolt (100m x 3, 200m x 3)
  • Jesse Owens (100m & 200m)
  • Harold Abrahams (100m)
  • Allan Wells (100m)
  • Valeri Borzov (100m & 200m)
  • Pietro Mennea (200m)
  • Carl Lewis (100m x 2, 200m)
  • Linford Christie (100m)
  • Michael Johnson (200m)
  • Donovan Bailey (100m)
  • Maurice Greene (100m)
  • Justin Gatlin (100m)
  • Marcel Jacobs (100m)
  • Andre De Grasse (200m)

Women

  • Fanny Blankers-Koen (100m, 200m)
  • Wyomia Tyus (100m x 2)
  • Valerie Brisco-Hooks (200m)
  • Evelyn Ashford (100m)
  • Florence Griffith-Joyner (100m, 200m)
  • Gail Devers (100m x 2)
  • Gwen Torrence (200m)
  • Marie-Jose Perec (200m)
  • Veronica Campbell-Brown (200m x 2)
  • Alyson Felix (200m)
  • Shelly-Ann Fraser-Price (100m x 2)
  • Elaine Thompson-Herah (100m x 2, 200m x 2)

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