By Steven Fouchard, Army Public Affairs
Oromocto, New Brunswick — Staff at the Canadian Army (CA)’s Combat Training Centre (CTC) are preparing to host an upcoming sniper competition, and one organizer says the event is always a great learning opportunity.
“Even now I learn stuff from the new snipers on the ground,” said Warrant Officer Morgan Warren, part of the sniper training team at the CTC’s Infantry School. “We’re not just learning from the top down, but from bottom up as well.”
The 2018 Canadian International Sniper Concentration will take place from September 21 to 28 at 5th Canadian Division Support Base (5 CDSB) Gagetown in Oromocto, New Brunswick. 5 CDSB has hosted the event each year since 1997.
“The competition consists of everything and anything that a sniper will need to do: shooting, observation, determining target distance, and stalking – a lot of shooting events by day and by night,” WO Warren explained. “Essentially we’re trying to test all the skills that a sniper would use.”
Competitors from the United States, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Poland, France and The Netherlands are also expected, along with seven law enforcement agencies from across Canada.
WO Warren said the CA is generally represented by about a dozen teams.
Competing shooters will test their skills with weapons from the very long-range variety (.50 calibre rifles will be used to engage targets at distances of a mile or more) to pistols.
“We’ll also do unknown distance shoots,” WO Warren said. “The competitors will have to determine distance to targets without a laser range finder and try to effectively engage them. And you’re always on the clock and everything is scored.”
“We’ll do the same type of events at night,” he added. “And obviously when it gets dark out, things become more difficult.”
The final event will be a day-long test of the competitors’ stalking skills. With the additional pressure of a time limit, they will have to find their way to a target site and engage while remaining undetected.
“If you get inside of the stalk area undetected, you get so many points. If you get a first round hit, you get so many points. If you get a second round hit you get so many points, and so on,” WO Warren explained.
WO Warren said training snipers exposes him to some of the CA’s very best.
“It’s just a great organization to be a part of. We have a high transfer rate with snipers – we lose a lot of guys to the Special Forces. I’m dealing with very professional people. And the commanders know they can just task these guys and they know they’re going to perform.”