Media Release – September 30, 2020
Canadian Mathematical Society

All Members of Math Team Canada Win Medals at the 2020 IMO

Screenshot of Math Team Canada Members at the virtual Opening Ceremony

OTTAWA – Math Team Canada 2020 wins three Gold medals, one Silver medal and two Bronze medal. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 Olympiad took place virtually in Saint Petersburg this year. The six team members competed individually, answering six grueling questions in a competition lasting two days, four and a half hours each day. More than 600 high school students competed at the 2020 IMO.

Math Team Canada placed 12th out of 105 countries. The Co-Chair of IMO committee, James Rickards said that this was the first IMO to be held remotely due to the ongoing pandemic. However, he adds proudly, “despite the new challenges, the Canadian team had one of the best performances in our history!”

The IMO Team Leader, Alex Song also rejoiced at the results:

The students spent months preparing for IMO 2020 over the summer and participated in the middle of their academic year. I am proud of the students for their commitment to representing Canada at the IMO 2020, even after having known that it would be remote and within the school year. Congratulations to the students for their excellent results!

The team results are as follows:

  • Thomas Guo [Markham, ON], Phillips Exeter Academy, Exeter, NH, USA – Gold medal
  • Michael Li [Toronto, ON], Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute  – Gold medal
  • Eric Shen [Toronto, ON], University of Toronto Schools ─ Gold medal
  • Zixiang Zhou [London, ON], London Central Secondary School ─ Silver medal
  • David Tang [Toronto, ON], University of Toronto Schools – Bronze medal
  • Edgar Wang [Westmount, QC], Marianopolis College ─ Bronze medal

The team trained through virtual meetings with the leaders and trainers. The success of the team, according to deputy team leader, Byung Chun is also the result of these efforts.

The Canadian math community worked together and demonstrated true spirit of collaboration this year for Math Team Canada to success. CMS is grateful for everyone involved. Special thanks go to Daniel Spivak and Ed Barbeau for proctoring the students in person during the competition in Toronto. Dr. Barbeau was very happy with the smoothness of the operation and says he is also “grateful to the Fields Institute for providing the facilities and looking after the technical arrangements,” which created a comfortable environment for students to write the competition.

This year, Eric Shen is chosen as the Beatty Student. His participation at the IMO is sponsored by the Samuel Beatty Fund and he will be writing the Samuel Beatty IMO Report following the competition.

The 62nd International Mathematical Olympiad will take place next year in St-Petersburg, Russian Federation.

About the International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO)

The International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO) is the world championship high school mathematics competition. The IMO began in 1959 in Romania with seven participating countries. Math Team Canada expects to compete against the world’s best students from over 100 countries in the 62nd IMO. Canada has earned 36 gold, 58 silver and 94 bronze medals since first competing in 1981.

Canadian Math team Sponsors

The Canadian Mathematical Society is very grateful to the following sponsors for their support of Math Team Canada 2020:

The Casualty Actuarial Society; the Society of Actuaries; The Actuarial Foundation of Canada; University of Waterloo; York University; University of Toronto; NSERC PromoScience; Aqueduct Foundation; the Samuel Beatty Fund; Centre de recherches mathématiques; the FIELDS Institute; the Government of Ontario; as well as individual donations from members and non-members of CMS.

About the Canadian Mathematical Society (CMS)

Founded in 1945, the CMS is the main national organization whose goal is to promote and advance the discovery, learning and application of mathematics. The Society’s activities cover the whole spectrum of mathematics including scientific meetings, publications, grants, math camps and national and international mathematics competitions, as well as awards and prizes that recognize outstanding achievements.

For more information please contact:

Dr. Javad Mashreghi (Laval)
Canadian Mathematical Society 


James Rickards (McGill)
Chair, International Mathematical Olympiad Committee