2017 USAJMO Problems/Problem 6

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Problem

Let $P_1, \ldots, P_{2n}$ be $2n$ distinct points on the unit circle $x^2 + y^2 = 1$ other than $(1,0)$. Each point is colored either red or blue, with exactly $n$ of them red and exactly $n$ of them blue. Let $R_1, \ldots, R_n$ be any ordering of the red points. Let $B_1$ be the nearest blue point to $R_1$ traveling counterclockwise around the circle starting from $R_1$. Then let $B_2$ be the nearest of the remaining blue points to $R_2$ traveling counterclockwise around the circle from $R_2$, and so on, until we have labeled all the blue points $B_1, \ldots, B_n$. Show that the number of counterclockwise arcs of the form $R_i \rightarrow B_i$ that contain the point $(1,0)$ is independent of the way we chose the ordering $R_1, \ldots, R_n$ of the red points.

Solution

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