Junior Soldier (JS) Field writes from the Army Technical Foundation College in Winchester about a busy week of training, spent mostly live firing on the range. Did he pass his Annual Combat Marksmanship Test?
This week we’ve been on the range improving our shooting at various ranges and in different positions, before conducting the Annual Combat Marksmanship Test (ACMT) which every soldier must pass.
On Monday we had to get up at 0530 to get to breakfast before getting on to a coach at 0700 to go to the range. It was quite an early start, even earlier than we normally get up. We got down to the range and set up ready to start at 0900. The weather wasn’t too bad – overcast but not too cold. I was happy with my shooting on the Monday – I had improved from the DCCT the previous week. Tuesday was pretty similar to Monday and I again shot quite well.
On Wednesday we did our Personal Fitness Test. We do this to see how our fitness is improving during training. I ran my mile and a half in 9 minutes 15 seconds which is a big improvement from 9 minutes 50 seconds from when we first arrived 12 weeks ago. Everyone in the Troop ran under the allocated 10 minutes 30 seconds so we were all quite happy. We also had quite an interesting lesson on the differences between different cultures.
Thursday saw us back on the ranges. It was very similar to Monday and Tuesday but we stayed later at the range and shot in the dark. It was a good experience, although I really couldn’t see a thing! The highlight of the week came on Friday – we got up bright and early, as we normally do, and prepared to go to the range again. It was freezing cold and the water running at the side of the range had frozen over. I was wearing my thermals, jumper, jacket, gloves and probably a bit more! For the ACMT we shot at 300m, 200m, 100m and finally from 50m. I was on first. Once we’d shot from all the different positions at the 4 distances we went to the targets to find out if we’d passed or failed. I was buzzing to find out that I had passed but even happier to find out that I had scored enough to be a marksman… something I’m extremely proud of.
Overall this week has been very long and tiring – but it has been worth it in the end. I had the weekend to recover and get ready for exercise coming up in week 13…