Gurpreet Singh, 29, was last home in 2010 and since has been staying at the Army Marksman Unit when he’s not out and about representing India at various shooting competitions across the globe. As a youngster, Gurpreet was fascinated with machines and when he joined the army, in his engineering classes they taught placing and building landmines, which interested the youngster. Leading up to the Rio 2016 Olympics, his focus was on dealing with the pressure that comes with representing your country at such an event. “The main thing is to avoid extra pressure by training your mind to treat the Olympics as just another tournament. The competitors are the same, the targets are the same, nothing’s different…,” he had told Indian Express. Coming from Naushehra Pannuan village in the Tarn Taran district of Punjab, Gurpreet like most, became an Armyman – like many in his family. But unlike most there, he took up shooting as a sport – something that wasn’t known to many in the village until he bagged a medal at the 2010 Commonwealth Games.
Career Highlights: At 2010 Commonwealth Games, Gurpreet won three medals – two gold and a bronze. He won gold in the 10m air pistol and 25m rapid fire pistol pair events and bronze in the 25m rapid fire pistol individual event.
Record: Gurpreet failed to qualify for the London Olympics despite the impressive showing in Delhi. This will be his first Olympics.
Qualification: Gurpreet won India’s fifth quota in shooting when he finished fourth at the Munich World Cup in June 2015.
Event: 10m air pistol and 25m rapid fire pistol
Schedule: Aug 6 and 12