United States Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School


Hometown: Fort Bragg, NC, US

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Sniper competition test more than just marksmanship

Commanding Unit


United States Army Special Operations Command
Fort Bragg, NC, US

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Sniper competition test more than just marksmanship Sniper competition test more than just marksmanship
Sgt. Jim Soto,an instructor at the Army Sniper School at For Benning, Ga., fires a snot at a distant target during the United States Army Special Operations Command...
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Col. Miguel A. Correa, commander of the 1st Special Warfare Training Group (Airborne), United States Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School presents...
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Recent News Stories

Sniper Competition Test More Than Just Marksmanship Sniper Competition Test More Than Just Marksmanship
Sniper teams from special-operations units, federal and state law enforcement agencies along with foreign competitors from around the globe converged on the Special...
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Two students assigned to the United States Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School were recognized for their heroic actions, which directly resulted in...
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The United States Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School received recognition for exceptional supply, maintenance and logistical readiness on October...
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Soldiers, civilians and their families assigned to the Unites States Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and school enjoyed a festive evening of fun and food...
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Cloudy skies and slight mist of rain didn’t stop motorcyclist assigned to the United States Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School from conducting a...
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On Nov. 10, 2012, a team from 2nd Battalion, 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne) stopped at checkpoint Bahardu in Afghanistan. The Soldiers spent three hours with...


Recent Publications

Special Warfare - 10.17.2014
Special Warfare - 10.17.2014
October - December 2014 issue of Special Warfare
Special Warfare - 08.18.2014
Special Warfare - 08.18.2014
Special Warfare, Special Edition SWCS FY15 Academic Handbook
Special Warfare - 08.18.2014
Special Warfare - 08.18.2014
Special Warfare JUL-SEP 2014 + ARSOF 2002, Part II
Special Warfare - 07.16.2014
Special Warfare - 07.16.2014
ARSOF 2022 Part II
Special Warfare - 07.01.2014
Special Warfare - 07.01.2014
ARSOF 2022 Part II
Special Warfare - 04.01.2014
Special Warfare - 04.01.2014
CF-SOF Interdependence



Sniper Competition Test More Than Just Marksmanship


Story by Sgt. 1st Class Shelman Spencer

Sniper competition test more than just marksmanship FORT BRAGG, N.C. – Sniper teams from special-operations units, federal and state law enforcement agencies along with foreign competitors from around the globe converged on the Special Forces Sniper Course to put their skills to the test in this year’s United States Army Special Operations Command International Sniper Competition.

Twenty-four teams, including four foreign teams, competed for one year of bragging rights to say they are the best in their business. Each team is comprised of one shooter and a spotter.

Each team faced 19 challenging events in every aspect of sniper operations in both day and night events, which were derived from Special Forces Sniper Course instructors building their own event based off real world experiences, pitting snipers against time, distance and unknown circumstances. Sniper teams faced tactical challenges while moving through urban environments, all the while engaging targets as close as 25-meters and as far as 1,000 meters. The challenges test team members' ability to communicate with each other and shoot accurately while racing to beat the clock.

Events are derived from Special Forces Sniper Course Instructors developing their own challenges based off real world engagements. Instructors then test and develop the event prior to the competition to ensure accuracy.

“This competition is a very difficult, anyone who aims to max out the events find out that they cant,” said an instructor at the Special Forces Sniper Course. “There aren’t too many military tactical competitions out there and that’s what separates us from everyone else. Other competitions focus on marksmanship, for our competition it’s a sniper competition so it’s encompassing field craft skills as well, a combination of all of your craft.”

This being the 6th annual competition hosted by the U.S. Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School’s Sniper Committee brought in many new competitors. Approximately three-quarters of this year’s teams, this was their first time competing here.

“It’s a very well planned, very prepared and challenging competition,” said Staff Sgt. Beau Rushing, an instructor at the U.S. Army Sniper School, Fort Benning, Ga. “You’re not always in the prone here shooting, your always shooting different positions and when you’re deployed to Afghanistan, Iraq or wherever it may be, you’re not always going to be in the prone, you might have to use a tripod to shoot with, or shoot off a rock that’s not flat or even off a roof top, which is pretty common.”

Most teams practice and train together on a daily basis, knowing how to maneuver like a well-oiled machine. That wasn’t entirely the case for the Army Sniper School Team.

“Off the start, we had a lot of catching up to, because all these guys had been training together, but once we overcame some kinks in our shooter/spotter dialog I think we started to gel a lot better,” said Sgt. Jim Soto, also an instructor at the U.S Army Sniper School. “If you don’t have good communications, that sniper team won’t succeed.”

Being able to participate in the competition starts with a competition to see who is best qualified to represent their organization.

“All instructors at the Fort Benning Sniper School who want to attend a competition have to do a shoot off for it,” said Rushing. The top two people who score the highest from that shoot off events are selected to go to the competition.”

The competition is more than just bragging rights, its taking what you learn from the events and other competitors.

“I write down each event every night and I’m going to take it back and brief it so we can tweak our international sniper competition,” said Rushing.

A sniper competition is about the excellence in your craft, it validate everyone training and ability to apply what they learn here in real world situations.

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