Math Team Canada 2016 places 12th at the International Mathematical Olympiad

Canadian high school team turns in world class performance, wins Olympiad gold, silver and bronze

Left to right: Patrick Lopatto (Observer), Qi Qi, Hunter Spink (Deputy Leader), Andrew Lin,
Kevin Sun, William Zhao, Kai Sun, Ruizhou Yang and Robert Morewood (Team Leader)

OTTAWA — Six Canadian high school students are celebrating their 12th place success upon their return from the 57th International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO) in Hong Kong.

Each student earned an award for Canada after competing against over 600 students at the world’s most challenging high school mathematics competition.

Students compete individually and country rankings are obtained by adding the team scores. The maximum score for each student is 42 and for a team of six students the maximum is 252. The Canadian team placed 12th out of 109 competing countries with a score of 148.

The 2016 contest was set by an international jury of mathematicians, one from each country, and was written on Monday, July 11th and Tuesday, July 12th. On each day of the contest, competitors had to solve three questions within a time limit of four and a half hours.

Math Team Canada members received their medals at the IMO closing ceremony held on Friday, July 15th. Both Kevin Sun (Phillips Exeter Academy, Exeter, NH, USA) and William Zhao (Richmond Hill High School, Richmond Hill, Ont.) were awarded with gold medals, Kai Sun (A.B. Lucas Secondary School, London, Ont.) and Qi Qi (Phillips Exeter Academy, Exeter, NH, USA) were awarded with silver medals, Ruizhou Yang (University Hill Secondary School, Vancouver, B.C.) was awarded with a bronze medal, and Andrew Lin (University Hill Secondary School, Vancouver, B.C.) was awarded an honourable mention.

Kevin Sun’s gold medal pushed him into the top echelon of high school mathematics with the IMO ranking him as the 17th best mathematics student in the world. Additionally, William Zhao, a grade 9 student, was the youngest participant to win a gold medal and Qi Qi was ranked as the highest scoring female participant in the competition.

“I am very pleased with this team, from a perfect team score on Question 4 to multiple points on the almost impossible Question 3, every team member is bringing home an award. Kevin led the team to a 12th place finish this year, winning another gold medal, finishing in the top 20 individuals (top 3%) and earning a top 20 spot in the IMO Hall of Fame,” said Robert Morewood, the leader of Math Team Canada 2016.

Math Team Canada was selected through several CMS competitions, including the Sun Life Financial Canadian Mathematical Olympiad. Under the direction of Robert Morewood (Team Leader), Hunter Spink (Deputy Team Leader) and Patrick Lopatto (Deputy Team Observer), the members of Math Team Canada 2016 trained for two weeks at the Banff International Research Station (BIRS), before travelling to Hong Kong.

Canada’s success at the IMO would not be possible without the assistance of our corporate and provincial sponsors. The CMS wishes to extend a gracious thank-you to Sun Life Financial, the title sponsor of Math Team Canada 2016. The CMS is also grateful for support from CAE, Invention Development Fund, McLean Foundation, Government of Manitoba, Government of the Northwest Territories, Government of Nova Scotia, Government of Ontario, Government of Prince Edward Island, the Banff International Research Station (BIRS), Le centre de recherches des mathematiques (CRM), the Fields Institute, the Pacific Institute for Mathematical Sciences (PIMS) and York University.

About the International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO)

The International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO) is the world championship high school mathematics competition. The IMO began in 1959. Canada has earned 31 gold, 49 silver and 85 bronze medals since first competing in 1981. The 2017 IMO will take place from July 12-24 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

About the Canadian Mathematical Society (CMS)

Founded in 1945, the Canadian Mathematical Society (CMS) promotes the advancement, discovery, learning and application of mathematics. The CMS promotes mathematics through a rich array of activities including scientific meetings, publications, awards, prizes, grants, camps and competitions. For more information visit