CWG 2018

All you need to know about Sanjeev Rajput, the three-time CWG medallist shooter

Bronze in Melbourne, 2006. Silver in Glasgow, 2014. Gold in Gold Coast, 2018. Sanjeev Rajput has completed the trio.

Bronze in Melbourne, 2006.

Silver in Glasgow, 2014.

Gold in Gold Coast, 2018.

Sanjeev Rajput has won medals of all metals at the Commonwealth Games. The last one, for him, will be special, not just because it’s most valuable but also because he perhaps worked the hardest to get it.

He won the gold medal in the men’s 50m rifle 3 positions event with a games record on Saturday to take the Indian shooting team’s medals tally to 16 medals.

(Read more: Follow all the updates on an action-packed day ten for India here.)

Sanjeev was born in a small town of Haryana to a street-food vendor. He went on to join the Indian Navy, where he serves as the Master Chief Petty Officer II. He started his shooting career in 2001.

Three years later, Sanjeev clinched three golds and a silver medal in the 2004 SAF Games.

Sanjeev then won gold at Commonwealth Shooting Championships in Melbourne in 50m rifle 3 positions pairs event in 2005. The year 2006 saw him winning his first CWG medal in his maiden attempt. He later clinched a bronze at the Asian Games in the same year.

The shooter was conferred with the Arjuna Award, India’s highest sporting medal, in 2010.He won double gold in the 50m rifle 3 position event in Commonwealth Shooting Championships in Delhi that year.

The last two years, for Sanjeeev, 37, has been tough.

He was arrested on a rape charge filed by a national level shooter. The woman shooter physically attacked the Olympian while he was participating in the shooting nationals in Pune in December 2016.

Earlier, Rajput had won India its 12th Rio Olympic quota place at the Asian Olympic qualifiers but was left out of the squad at the last minute as he had finished 0.66 points behind 2012 Gagan Narang in the qualifying system.

Support our journalism by subscribing to Scroll+ here. We welcome your comments at
Sponsored Content BY 

What are racers made of?

Grit, strength and oodles of fearlessness.

Sportspersons are known for their superhuman discipline, single-minded determination and the will to overcome all obstacles. Biographies, films and documentaries have brought to the fore the behind-the-scenes reality of the sporting life. Being up at the crack of dawn, training without distraction, facing injuries with a brave face and recovering to fight for victory are scenes commonly associated with sportspersons.

Racers are no different. Behind their daredevilry lies the same history of dedication and discipline. Cornering on a sports bike or revving up sand dunes requires the utmost physical endurance, and racers invest heavily in it. It helps stave off fatigue and maintain alertness and reaction time. It also helps them get the most out of their racecraft - the entirety of a racer’s skill set, to which years of training are dedicated.

Racecraft begins with something as ‘simple’ as sitting on a racing bike; the correct stance is the key to control and manoeuvre the bike. Riding on a track – tarmac or dirt is a great deal different from riding on the streets. A momentary lapse of concentration can throw the rider into a career ending crash.

Physical skill and endurance apart, racers approach a race with the same analytical rigour as a student appearing in an exam. They conduct an extensive study of not just the track, but also everything around it - trees, marshal posts, tyre marks etc. It’s these reference points that help the racer make braking or turning decisions in the frenzy of a high-stakes competition.

The inevitability of a crash is a reality every racer lives with, and seeks to internalise this during their training. In the immediate aftermath of the crash, racers are trained to keep their eyes open to help the brain make crucial decisions to avoid collision with other racers or objects on the track. Racers that meet with accidents can be seen sliding across the track with their heads held up, in a bid to minimise injuries to the head.

But racecraft is, of course, only half the story. Racing as a profession continues to confound many, and racers have been traditionally misunderstood. Why would anyone want to pour their blood, sweat and tears into something so risky? Where do racers get the fearlessness to do laps at mind boggling speed or hurtle down a hill unassisted? What about the impact of high speeds on the body day after day, or the monotony of it all? Most importantly, why do racers race? The video below explores the question.


The video features racing champions from the stable of TVS Racing, the racing arm of TVS Motor Company, which recently completed 35 years of competitive racing in India. TVS Racing has competed in international rallies and races across some of the toughest terrains - Dakar, Desert Storm, India Baja, Merzouga Rally - and in innumerable national championships. Its design and engineering inputs over the years have also influenced TVS Motors’ fleet in India. You can read more about TVS Racing here.

This article has been produced by Scroll Brand Studio on behalf of TVS Racing and not by the Scroll editorial team.