18 October 2012
Four personnel (including two snipers and a sniper coach) from 2/1 Royal NZ Infantry Regiment (2/1 RNZIR) of NZ Army, headed to the Canadian Forces Base (CFB) Gagetown last month to attend the 16th Canadian International Sniper Concentration (CISC) from 24 September to 4 October.
The 16th CISC was the largest held yet, with six of the 33 teams competing from countries other than Canada (the Netherlands, Italy, United States, Ireland and New Zealand). The majority of teams came from Canadian military units or Canadian police tactical units such as the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) who had two teams competing.
Marksmanship and sniper skills are a core element of infantry training within the NZ Army.
Captain Aaron Soppet, one of the NZ Army team members, says, “The aim of the concentration was the dissemination of general knowledge and ideas within the sniping community and the attending militaries as a whole. More emphasis was put on the concentration than the competition element of the event.”
“The training and general fitness of our sniper's was excellent, you know the guys are doing well when the Range Conducting Officer is trying to keep up with them and the civilian Small Arms Remote Target operators are struggling to get targets up in time for them.”
“The NZ team did particularly well in the pistol shoot coming 5th overall, a significant achievement considering many of the competing Police teams would consider the pistol their more primary weapon in the field.”
“Gagetown is one of the largest training areas utilised by the Canadian Military and is the home of one of their combat schools. Gagetown is slightly larger than the Waiouru training area but with a huge number of ranges encompassing close country, urban, open terrain and various specialty ranges. The terrain is varied and soldiers are constantly aware of moose and bears within the training areas,” said Captain Soppet.
The teams competed in eight different events with two of the events cancelled due to poor weather. The shoots were conducted in full personal protection equipment (PPE). The concentration was concluded with a symposium which discussed some of the participating units operational deployments and training and the differences between training in the different countries.
The NZ Army team came 14th out of 33 teams overall.
For further information contact, Defence Communications Group, Miss Zen Gregor on 021-224-3367.