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    73rd Troop Command: Best Warrior Competition 2022

    73rd Troop Command: Best Warrior Competition 2022

    Photo By Spc. Carleeann Smiddy | U.S. Army Pfc. Max Walls, assigned to the 437th Military Police Battalion, launches a...... read more read more



    Story by Sgt. Karl Mason 

    196th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment

    RAVENNA, Ohio — The Ohio Army National Guard's 73rd Troop Command conducted its Best Warrior Competition at Camp James A. Garfield Joint Military Training Center, Nov. 4-5, 2022. The competitors spent two physically and mentally demanding days where they were tested on a written exam, Army Warrior Task drills, which included medical, radio, stress shoot, weapons skills and land navigation knowledge, as well as an Army Combat Fitness Test and a 6-mile ruck march.

    The competitors had the opportunity to demonstrate commitment to the Army Values, embody the Warrior Ethos and how they represent the force of the future.

    “For morale, recognition and readiness, the Best Warrior Competition really shows Soldiers who are tactically and technically proficient in their crafts,” said U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Michael Winans, a BWC range safety NCO from the 437th Military Police Battalion.

    The written exam included a range of questions regarding military life and services, American history and government.

    Following the written exam, competitors’ dress uniforms were checked for accuracy while they were asked on-the-spot questions during a board interview compiled of senior noncommissioned officers, who evaluated their ability to show customs and courtesies. The live test added a level of stress to the event, which forced the Soldiers to think quickly about their answers.

    “Readiness is important because our ultimate mission is to defend the country, and we have to be ready at all times,'' said Pfc. Trevor Conn, a competitor from the 155th Chemical Battalion.

    Soldiers were then evaluated and graded for time and accuracy on five Army Warrior Tasks.

    First, they assembled and operated a Single Channel Ground and Airborne Radio System. Then, they evaluated a casualty while applying a tourniquet and conducting preventative measures to control shock. Lastly, they used their radio communication skills to request a nine-line medical evacuation.

    Soldiers moved to the weapons lane, where they were evaluated on their familiarization with the M17 Pistol, M4 carbine, M249 light machine gun and the M240B machine gun. It is common for Soldiers to be assigned one or all of these weapons during their career, so proficiency with them is important. Therefore, they were graded on their ability to disassemble, reassemble and conduct functions checks on each weapon system.

    The ACFT allowed the competitors to show their physical fitness strength. The evaluated events included the maximum deadlift, standing power throw, hand release push-up, sprint-drag-carry, plank and the 2-mile run, which are the standard exercises Soldiers are graded on annually.

    The stress shoot assessed Soldiers’ marksmanship skills while they were under stressful and exhausting conditions, which included conducting a physical exercise before dragging a 185-pound manikin to a firing point 50 feet away where they found their first weapon system. After engaging the targets, the Soldiers picked up two full water cans and rushed 100 feet to the second shooting position where they conducted another physical exercise before firing the second weapon system. They completed two more cycles of this before reaching the finish. This challenge evaluated the Soldiers’ ability to keep steady aim while having an increased heart rate and exhausted muscles.

    Land navigation was next on the list for the already tired competitors. It has been used by the U.S. Army for decades to assess a Soldiers’ skill with a map and compass. Soldiers used a course established by the U.S. Special Forces to prepare candidates for selection. The competitors' score was based on time and accuracy, locating 4 points on the course.

    Finally, the last event of the competition was the 6-mile ruck march that each Soldier was required to complete with a 45-pound bag.

    “I would have to say that my favorite competition was the ruck,” said Pfc. Max Walls, this year's junior enlisted winner from the 437th Military Police Battalion. “It was by far probably the most challenging one I did, but most rewarding as well.”

    The competition also gave leaders a chance to gauge unit and Soldier readiness, and the Soldiers were able to assess their areas of improvement.

    The two winners, U.S. Army Sgt. Jordan Dirr and Pfc. Max Walls, both with the 437th Military Police Battalion, will go on to represent the 73rd Troop Command at the Ohio Army National Guard’s BWC in Spring 2023.



    Date Taken: 11.06.2022
    Date Posted: 11.06.2022 23:08
    Story ID: 432751
    Location: RAVENNA, OH, US

    Web Views: 572
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