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Bristol URNU members compete at MILCOMP 2017 in Prague

Bristol URNU members compete at MILCOMP 2017 in Prague
12 December 2017
After completing our firearms training in the UK, our two-week adventure began with one weeks training in a German army base.

For the first few days OC Mannall and myself began to wonder if we’d picked a challenge too hard to complete and if we’d ever be ready for the competition in Prague; having never shot a pistol and having very little experience in both the rifle shooting and orienteering, we started to feel a little out of our comfort zones!

However, both the UK and German teams were able to coach us the skills required for all aspects of the competition and also put on a couple of socials!

Throughout the week, we were able to practice in the 50m outside swimming pool (I’m sure we were close to hyperthermia on several occasions!); orienteer through the German countryside – somehow managing to navigate through ‘impassable’ woodlands; practice both rapid and precision shooting, as well as going through the NATO obstacle course.

The competition started off in Prague with an opening ceremony and ‘meet and greet’ next to one of the world’s biggest equine statues. It was a great feeling to be stood as part of the UKs MILCOMP team. 

The next day was kicked off by the obstacle course and grenade throwing in 38°C heat, making the competition even more challenging. The obstacle course involved jumping over and under various shapes and sizes of equipment, but most importantly teamwork and determination to get to the finish line.

The next day was the swimming, which was changed slightly in this year’s competition, and involved diving in, swimming half a length, untying a float, swimming the rest of the length and retying it, getting out and diving back into the pool to retrieve a rubber rifle and swimming back to the start with it. 

Day 3 was both rifle and pistol shooting as well as distance estimation and map reading. This was probably one of the more challenging days as many of the skills were very new to us, but we still tried our hardest and learnt a lot from the experience.

The penultimate day was the 10 mile orienteering run through various terrains in Prague. After getting lost for almost an hour, drained of energy and on the brink of giving up, we managed to find our way to the finish, only to find an obstacle course we had to complete while carrying a sandbag.

It took every bit of energy, we weren’t even sure we had to complete it! The final day comprised of an exam on the law of armed conflict and a Gala ball.

All in all, it was an amazing experience which we hope to partake in next year, and we can safely say we put in all the effort we could, and it was a very rewarding event!

Article Written by Surg SLt E Gregory – Bristol URNU

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