India’s Olympian offers to sport Your name on His Olympic Racing Suit
Luger Shiva Keshavan initiates revolutionary campaign promising to sport on his Olympic racing suit, the name of every person who shares his video online
Shiva Keshavan K P is India’s only medal hope at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, the world famous sporting event that takes place once every four years.30-year-old Keshavan is the country’s first and only athlete who practices and excels in the little known sport of Luge, the fastest and most dangerous of the 3 Olympic sliding sports. Lugers, as they are referred to, use a sled to race supine and feet-first, reaching astonishing speeds of over 140 km per hour.
Keshavan has initiated a unique campaign to promote this little-known sport amongst the people of India. Using the power of social media, the luge pilot is raising awareness about his sport and garnering support for his dare-devilry. In a distinctive call-for-support initiative, Keshavan has released a stunning video where he travels at speeds of over 100 km per hour on an un-motored sled down the notoriously dangerous Leh-Manali highway and has promised to sport on his Olympic racing suit, the name of each person who shares this video.
The campaign, which is emblematically named “India for Shiva”, is focused to not just spread awareness about the sport of Luge but also establish Shiva Keshavan as a ‘Citizen’s Olympian’ and gather support for the athlete while he trains to make India proud at the 2014 Winter Olympic Games. At the end of the 2-minute video – which showcases Shiva’s spirited feat on the Leh-Manali highway – Shiva makes a distinctive appeal to the viewers, saying, “Help me spread the idea of Luge. Just share this video, and I’ll put your name on my racing suit at the Winter Olympic Games!”
Sports culture in India today is predominantly cricket-centric, and in a setting where most other sporting disciplines occupy second place, Keshavan’s pioneering call exemplifies the distress countless sportsmen and athletes experience in order to acquire much needed support and recognition. Let’s face it. Ours is a country which follows one sport as a religion, many a time unceremoniously disregarding most others. This is truly an ingenious way of generating awareness, and uses the power of social media and the internet to help create a new sporting sub-culture.
Keshavan has represented India in 4 Olympic Games and various international events creating numerous Indian, Asian and World Records along the way. He has represented India internationally since 1997 and is helped on this mission by telecom major MTS, and hopes that Luge and other winter sports gain much needed attention in India.
Commenting on the unique campaign, Luger Shiva Keshavan said: “I want the people of India to actually be there in the Olympic Games with me, and this is the best way symbolically we can make it happen. Many thanks to MTS that this will actually be a possibility now!”
Creative agency Eleven Brandworks has conceptualized and executed the campaign. Log on to www.indiaforshiva.com for more details and register your support for this campaign through the application listed on the website.
This is your chance. Log on – watch the video – share it – support Keshavan! He’ll sport your name on his racing suit at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
About Shiva Keshavan
Shiva Keshavan (full name Shiva Keshavan K P; born August 25, 1981) is the first Indian to compete in Luge at the Winter Olympic Games. Keshavan was supported by the Indian Government for the Olympic Season of 2009-10 and given a special award by the Sports Minister for winning the first-ever international medal for India in any winter sport.
Hailing from a remote village in the Himalayan Range, Keshavan’s interest in winter sports began at a very young age. His earliest memories of winter sports are when Keshavan and his friends made their own skis using wood and metal sheets to play during the winter months. During summer, Keshavan and his friends used to prepare roller sleds with wood and bearings to speed down mountain roads.
His passion for adventure sports became competitive as the Kullu Valley gradually grew into a hub for adventure and winter sports in India. Keshavan was a dedicated athleteand went on to qualify for his first Winter Olympic Games in 1998 at the age of 16, a world record that stands until this day.
Olympics and achievements
- Asian Gold Medalist, Asia Cup, Nagano – 2011 and 2012
- Asian Speed Record Holder – 134.3 km per hour
- Asian Track Record Holder – 49.590 seconds
- Luge Pilot, representing India internationally since 1997
- Youngest ever Luge Olympian at the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan
- Sole Indian representative at the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, USA
- Indian representative at the 2006 Winter Olympics in Torino, Italy
- Indian representative at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Canada
- Asian Silver Medalist, Asian Championships, Nagano 2009-10
- Asian Bronze Medalist, Asian Championships, Nagano 2008-09
- Asian Silver Medalist (Doubles), Asian Championships, Nagano 2005-06
- Asian Bronze Medalist (Singles), Asian Championships, Nagano 2005-06
- Top Speed – 149.9 km/h (Vancouver Speed Record)