As we are sure you are well aware, the 2016 Olympic games are officially over. 11,544 athletes competed from 207 nations, and while not everyone (or every nation) was able to come away with a medal, that’s not the case for the 30 women you’re about to read about.
In fact, these women from 16 nations won a combined 62 medals at this year’s Olympics. Didn’t watch the Olympics? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered there too as we explain just how they earned their spot on our list. Some events came down to split seconds (let’s be honest, most did) and there was even one event that had a tie for first place (what are the odds of that?).
But we also know why you’re here, and if there’s a photo of them that also proves why they belong on our list of hottest and most successful medal winners, you better believe that’s included in our list too. There’s even one from Aly Raisman from the ESPN Body Issue magazine, where she proves that clothes are very much overrated.
These are 30 of the most successful women from this year’s Olympics, they just happen to also be gorgeous.
One thing is going to be clear by the end of this list – it turns out you have to be in shape to be an Olympic athlete… Who knew?
30. Brianne Theisen-Eaton – Canada, Bronze in Women’s Heptathlon
The Women’s Heptathlon is definitely no joke. It consists of 100m hurdles, high jump, shot put, 200m, long jump, javelin throw and an 800m. You make me do any one of those activities and I’m gasping for breath, much less all of them! Theisen-Eaton took home the bronze medal, falling behind Jessica Ennis of Great Britain and Nafissatou Thiam of Belgium.
29. Kristi Castlin – United States Of America America, Bronze In 100m Hurdles
Kristi Castlin is no stranger to showing off her abs online, and thankfully they came in handy when she sprinted and jumped her way to a bronze medal in the 100m Hurdles in Rio.
Castlin finished with a time of 12.61 seconds, which was just behind the silver medal time of 12.59 and the gold medal time of 12.48.
28. Sophie Scheder – Germany, Bronze In Uneven Bars
Below you’re going to get to check out some of her competition, but there is definitely nobody hating on Sophie Scheder’s performance at this year’s Olympics, as she took home Bronze in Women’s Uneven Bars.
Scheder was the first German woman to win a medal at an Uneven Bars competition since Dagmar Kersten who won a medal at the 1988 games. Scheder is only 19 years old, so you can imagine that all of Germany is hoping Scheder can continue to grow as a gymnast.
27. Bárbara Seixas and Ágatha Bednarczuk – Brasil, Silver In Women’s Beach Volleyball
As you can imagine, beach volleyball players tend to be in fantastic shape and in flattering clothing, so they’re probably going to appear on this list. Why not start out with Bárbara Seixas and Ágatha Bednarczuk who took home the silver medal?
26. Sara Petersen – Denmark, Silver In 400m Hurdles
With that look of determination in her eye, are you really shocked that Sara Petersen came away with a medal this year? Petersen came away with the silver in the 400m hurdles with a time of 53.55.
To show just how close this competition was, the gold medal time was 53.13, and 53.72 brought home the bronze. 4th place? 53.92. Imagine the plane ride home knowing you were under 1 second away from gold, and instead, you don’t get a medal.
25. Elodie Clouvel – France, Silver In Modern Pentathlon
Below you’ll get a photo of Clouvel alongside the gold and bronze medal winners, but when it comes to looks, this silver medalist can definitely blow you away. Clouvel participated in the women’s Pentathlon, with her best section being swimming where she placed second.
When it comes to making this list, it definitely doesn’t hurt that she looks absolutely dynamite when all dressed up for a night out on the town. Plus I mean, if things really starts to go down, at least you know you’re out with a lady who’s quick with a gun.
24. Ellen Hoog – Netherlands, Silver In Field Hockey
You may not be able to tell how amazing Hoog looks in a swimsuit by her sport of Field Hockey, but thankfully for you, Sport’s Illustrated tends to do swimsuit issues and why wouldn’t they choose Hoog?
Hoog has been part of the Netherlands since 2004 and has competed in 127 matches. At the Rio games, she had the winning shot in the semi-finals against Germany but sadly they fell short to New Zealand in the finals.
Now 30 years old, you can only hope that Hoog is going to be able to stay motivated and focused enough to come back and make a strong impact in the future. At the very least, if ESPN is looking for new models for their Body Issue, we’re sure Hoog’s name would be close to the top of their choices.
23. Ekaterini Stefanidi – Greece, Gold In Women’s Pole Vault
You may not be able to pronounce the name Ekaterini Stefanidi, but you probably still love to stare at her. At Rio, she took home the gold medal for a women’s pole vault of 4.85 meters.
The competition was not without controversy as prior to the event Russian athlete (and two-time Olympic champion) Yelena Isinbayeva blasted the event saying that it could not be a true competition without her. For those unaware, many Russian athletes (111 to be exact) were barred from competing at this year’s games due to a widespread doping scandal.
It didn’t deter Stefanidi’s elation, who spoke to reporters after, saying “Every single athlete in there would have wanted her to be there and have a chance to beat her, I can’t believe what’s happened. It’s amazing, the crowd were amazing, my parents are here, I’m glad to make my country proud.”
22. Bronte Campbell – Australia, Gold In 4x100m Freestyle
Bronte Campbell is a 22-year-old swimmer from Australia. At the 2015 World Aquatics Championships, Campbell was able to come away with three gold medals. While she did not take home any individual medals this year, she was still part of the 4x100m freestyle relay that took home the gold medal. If the medal wasn’t impressive enough, in the process team Australia set a world record with a time of 3:30.65.
21. Liliana Fernández and Elsa Baquerizo – Spain, Gold In Women’s Beach Volleyball
When you compete in team beach Volleyball, you definitely have the advantage of getting to look at two gorgeous women. Baquierzo and Liliana Fernández took home the gold medal at this year’s games so you can imagine there was plenty to celebrate. The two have been playing together since 2012. In the Summer Olympics, they were taken out in the round of 16.
20. Sanne Wevers – Netherlands, Gold In Beam Final
Below you’re going to read all about Simone Biles who took home 5 medals at this year’s games, but the one medal of hers that was not gold happened because Sanne Wevers decided to dominate all over the Beam. Hailing from the Netherlands, Wevers t00k home the gold medal with a score of 15.466. Laurie Hernandez, who like Biles is American, came in second with a score of 15.333.
19. Rosie MacLennan – Canada, Gold In Women’s Trampoline
I’m going to be honest, if there’s any one Olympic event that seems like it would be fun to be amazing at, trampoline is it. I mean, when I was a kid I could do a mean twist or turn in the air, but that’s nothing like the performance Rosie MacLennan put on to earn her 2nd straight Gold Medal at the event.
18. Chloe Esposito – Australia, Gold In Modern Pentathlon
If Chloe Esposito is all smiles, it’s with good reason. She took home the gold medal in the Modern Pentathlon with a score of 1372 which set an Olympic record. For those unaware, the pentathlon consists of fencing, swimming, jumping and a run and shoot section. Standing beside her on the podium is Elodie Clouvel from France who came second, and Oktawia Nowacka from Poland who took home the bronze.
17. Jade Jones – Great Britain, Gold In Women’s 57kg Taekwondo
If you don’t think Jade Jones is attractive, you better not say it to her face because she took home the gold medal in Women’s 57kg Taekwondo. Jones dominated her opponent, Eva Calvo Gomez from Spain with a winning score of 16 to 7.
Jones was no stranger to gold around her neck, taking home the top honor 4 years ago in London when she was only 19 years old. When talking about her experience on repeating as champion and her tactical approach to fighting, Jones said “I needed to modernise because straight after London everyone was working me out. But funnily enough the same thing that won me gold in London won it for me here. If you are good at a certain kick then use it. If it works, it works.”
16. Tabea Kemme – Germany, Gold In Women’s Soccer
There are plenty of gorgeous women from the German team that we’d love to take to Oktoberfest, but Kemme may stand out above the rest. The German team was successful at taking home the gold medal at this year’s Olympic games, knocking off Sweden in the Gold Medal game 2-1. It was a huge accomplishment, one recognized by the coach Silvia Neid who after the game said “This is something completely new, so this is definitely a new summit for German women’s football.”
15. Tania Cagnatto – Italy, Bronze In Women’s 3m Springboard and Silver In Women’s Synchronized 3m Springboard.
If you enjoy checking out how Cagnatto looks in a swimsuit, then you’re probably pretty happy that she competes in aquatic events. She took home two medals this year, a bronze medal in Women’s 3m Springboard and a silver medal in Women’s Synchronized 3m Springboard. The latter of which she won with Francesca Dallapé. Cagnatto is now 31 years old, so you’d imagine this was probably her last experience in the Olympics.
14. Becky James – Great Britain, Silver In Women’s Sprint (Cycling Track), Silver In Women’s Keirin
Are you ready for a fun fact about your writer? I actually cannot ride a bike, which makes Olympic cyclists all the more impressive to me. Becky James is one of the best in the world, coming away with 2 silver medals at this year’s games.
James may have done better had her former tutor, Shane Sutton, been able to continue working with British Cycling. Sutton stepped away from his post in late April after allegations of sexism and discrimination were filed against him. When asked about it, James said “I’ve never experienced that [claims made]. Shane was a massive supporter of me. I can’t thank him enough for what he did for me.”
13. Anna Korakaki – Greece, Gold In Women’s 25m Pistol and Bronze in Women’s 10m Air Pistol
If you like a woman who knows her way around some guns, why not go after Korakaki who’s clearly one of the most talented young shooters in the world. Korakaki is only 20 years old, but it did not stop her from knocking off the 33-year-old German, Monika Karsch, in Women’s 25m pistol for the gold.
Korakaki was bested by Vitalina Batsarashkina from Russia and Zhang Megnxue from China in Women’s 10m air pistol. It’s clear the future is bright for Korakaki and considering she’s gorgeous, we are sure many people can’t wait to see her again at the next Olympics.
12. Lisa Carrington – Great Britan, Gold In Women’s Kayak Single 200m and Bronze In Women’s Kayak Single 500m
If we’re being honest, there aren’t a ton of great “action shots” of Lisa looking gorgeous, but she also does her competitions from a kayak so who can blame her? Especially when she’s clearly just focused on her goal, which at these Olympics included taking home a Gold Medal in Women’s Kayak Single 200m. Carrington knocked off Marta Walczkiewicz from Poland and Inna Osypenko-Radomska from Azerbaijan.
It was clearly a close competition, with the top times being 39.86, 40.27, 40.40 and 40.76 would have gotten you 4th.
Carrington had an incredibly close brush with the silver medal in Women’s Kayak Single 500m, taking bronze medal with a time of 1:54.37, whereas silver medal went to Emma Jorgensen with 1:54.32. The gold medal went to Danuta Kozak who finished with 1:52.49.
11. Madison Kocian – United States Of America, Gold In Women’s Team All-Around and Silver In Women’s Uneven Bars.
Rio was the first Olympic appearance for Madison Kocian, but she definitely did not disappoint coming away with two medals. Her top moment may be being part of the Women’s Team All-Around Gymnastics group that took home a gold medal. When she was left in the spotlight by herself though Kocian hardly disappointed coming away with a silver medal in Women’s Uneven Bars.
10. Chang Hye-Jin – South Korea, Gold In Women’s Team and Gold In Women’s Individual
Do you know how dominant the South Koreans were at archery? You’re about to. When Ki Bobae, Choi Misun, and Chang Hyejin took home the gold medal in Women’s Team Event, it was the 8th gold medal in a row for the Korean team.
Chang Hye-Jin was particularly impressive, also taking home a gold medal in Women’s Individual where she beat out Lisa Unruh from Germany with a score of 6 to 2.
It was Ki Bobae that opened up to reporters about her success saying, “When it’s time for me to sleep, I always think about archery. That is why I can stay on top.”
9. Sarah Sjöström – Sweden, 3 Medals (1 Gold, 1 Silver, 1 Bronze)
Perhaps Sarah Sjöström just wanted to make sure she had one of each medal at the Olympics. Her brightest time in the spotlight came during the Women’s 100m butterfly event in which she set a world record with a time of 55.48 seconds. Penny Oleksiak, who you’ll read about below, came in 2nd with a time of 56.46.
Sarah Sjöström was beaten by Katie Ledecky in the 200m freestyle, finishing with 1:54.08 in comparison to Ledecky’s 1:53.73.
8. Aliya Mustafina – Russia, 3 Medals (1 Gold, 1 Silver and 1 Bronze)
Perhaps Mustafina took a look at Sarah Sjöström’s medals and also realized it’d be pretty awesome to have one of each medal from this year’s games. Mustafina’s peak performance came on the Women’s uneven bars, where she took home the gold medal.
Russia has a fantastic gymnastics program in general, which makes it not all that surprising that they took home a silver medal in Women’s Team All-Around (losing to America).
7. Aly Raisman – United States of America, 3 Medals (1 Gold, 2 Silver)
Aly Raisman may be an incredibly talented gymnast, but considering how gorgeous she is, you can imagine she’d be able to also make it as a model! Raisman’s sexiest moment didn’t come on a balance beam, but when she posed for ESPN’s Body Issue. Raisman was part of the team that took home the gold medal at Women’s Team All-Around. She also took home a silver medal in Women’s Floor Exercise and another silver in Women’s Individual All-Around.
Raisman is 22 years old, but gymnasts don’t tend to have a super long career. We can only hope she’ll be able to avoid injuries and be able to come back and stun us with her skills and looks at the next Olympics. We also hope ESPN hasn’t lost her number!
6. Penny Oleksiak – Canada, 4 Medals (1 Gold, 1 Silver and 2 Bronze)
America may have Katie Ledecky (who is right around the corner) and formerly Michael Phelps, but the future of swimming may be the 16-year-old, Penny Oleksiak. With a performance at the Olympics that’s impossible to ignore, Oleksiak took home 4 medals.
If you missed her gold medal performance in the Women’s 100m Freestyle, you missed an amazing performance as she tied Simone Manuel, both setting an Olympic record in the process.
5. Emma McKeon – Australia, 4 Medals (1 Gold, 2 Silver, 1 Bronze)
You’ve read a few times about Australia’s 4x100m Freestyle Relay, but it’s clear that Emma McKeon was a key component of their World Record time that earned her a gold medal. The team was also able to scrap up a silver medal in Women’s 4x100m Medley Relay and Women’s 4x200m Freestyle Relay. They lost both events to America.
When swimming for just herself, McKeon took home a bronze medal in the Women’s 200m Freestyle. She lost out to Katie Ledecky who claimed gold, by just over one second.
4. Simone Manuel – United States Of America, 4 Medals (2 Gold, 2 Silver)
When Simone Manuel took home the gold medal in the Women’s 100m freestyle alongside Penny Oleksiak, she became the first African-American woman to capture a gold medal in an individual swimming event. While that may have been her peak, Manuel was also a key member in the gold medal performance for the women’s 4x100m medley relay.
Manuel nearly changed her silver medal in the 50m freestyle into gold but lost out to Pernille Blume by a mere fraction. Blume (who was from Denmark) finished with a time of 24.07, in comparison to Manuel’s time of 24.09.
3. Katinka Hosszú – Hungary, 4 Medals (3 Gold, 1 Silver)
If you think there are a lot of medals in the photo of Katinka Hosszú above, just imagine how it’d look now considering she took home 4 medals at this year’s games.
Her top accomplishments came in Women’s 100m Backstroke, Women’s 400m Individual Medley, and Women’s 200m Individual Medley.
2. Simone Biles – United States Of America, 5 Medals (4 Gold, 1 Silver)
When you land the #2 spot on this list and you’re only 19 years old, you can imagine Biles has nothing but positive things in her future. Biles is arguably the best female gymnast in the world, winning gold in women’s vault, women’s team all-around, women’s floor exercise and women’s individual all-around.
1. Katie Ledecky – United States Of America, 5 Medals (4 Gold, 1 Silver)
The world may all be talking about Michael Phelps, but it’s clear that we also should not forget about Katie Ledecky. Born in Washington, Ledecky is only 19 years old but may be the best female swimmer in the world. The above photo also features Jazz Carlin who took home a silver medal for Great Britain.
Ledecky took home the gold medal in Women’s 200, 800 and 400m freestyle events. Ledecky also took home a gold in Women’s 4x200m freestyle relay.
She was also part of the American team that fell short to Emily Bronte and the Australian team that set the world record. I’m sure she won’t feel too bad about it, especially when you consider she was the most arguably the most successful female at this year’s Olympics.
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