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Competition by way of training

By Cpl. Sbastien Pisani
First published in
SFOR Informer#106, February 7, 2001

Drvar - With weapons in hand, a Czech patrol is running up a snowy track. Meanwhile, five Dutch infantrymen are advancing cautiously in order to reach one of their own who was injured by a mine.

The military skill competition, which took place February 3 at the Canadian camp of Drvar, put the entrants to the test.
"Each team had to use a variety of skills on the competition," said Maj. Cliff Trollope from the 2nd Canadian Battle Group. Observation sense, shooting aptitude and knowledge of procedures in a mined area were necessary to win this competition open to all MND-SW nations.

"Everybody came forward," Trollope said. Canadian, British, Dutch and Czechs confronted each other in good spirits in the five events.
The first one consisted of recognizing different kinds of vehicles used by SFOR forces and EAF from aerial pictures. The march and shoot tested the endurance and the skill of each team.

The entrants had 20 minutes to spot varied weapons laid on a closed field with observation equipment. Next they had a test that required them to remember the position of several items. At last, the event of assistance in a mined area gave the teams the opportunity to show their competence in an emergency situation.

"The standard is very high," said Sgt. Yannick Godbout, who was assigned the surveillance of the mined field. "There is not a wide difference between the teams. The reflexes are generally the same."
Representatives of the 4th Battalion from the First Brigade of Federation Army were present at this competition.

"They don't have the same means (as) you for training. I think it is interesting for them to see how we are working," Trollope said.

The Canadians finally dominated at home (98 points), followed by Czech and Dutch who tied (93 points). The British were not very far behind, with 91 points.
These results showed a level of competence that is very close whatever the nationality. It was an encouraging report for the course of the operations on the theater.




Related links:
Nations of SFOR: Canada, Netherland, UK, Czech Republic
Training and Exercises