RMC places 8th out of 49 teams at the Sandhurst military skills competition

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Officer cadets from the Royal Military College of Canada (RMC) captured 8th place on Saturday, April 13, at this year’s Sandhurst Military Skills Competition.

The international competition is held annually at the United States Army Military Academy (USMA) in West Point, and includes 49 teams from military academies around the world. It is designed to test the cadets’ military skills, physical endurance and teamwork.

Throughout the two-day annual event the 11-member teams must demonstrate their proficiency in weapons handling, marksmanship, swimming, first aid, problem solving, and leadership all while covering 43 kilometers of harsh terrain.

“This is a testament to the quality of our combat training and reflects the excellence of the young Canadians selected to attend RMC,” said Brigadier-General Sébastien Bouchard, RMC Commandant. “Today their effort, sacrifice and perseverance have been rewarded. Their accomplishment, a top-10 finish against teams from around the world, is one in which all Canadians can take pride.”

The RMC team has been training since October. After a week-long selection process, they trained almost every morning and every evening, focussing primarily on running and rucking ability, cross fitness, military skills and swimming. They also had weekend sessions to develop in-depth skill shooting on rifle or pistol, or working on team spirit and cohesion.

The team captain Officer Cadet Eric Guevremont admitted the team fell short of their first-place goal, but they have no regrets.

“We walked away knowing there was nothing left inside of us to give,” said OCdt Guevremont. “Having the chance to represent RMC and our country in an international competition is a once in a life time experience. That is what this team is about. Making friends, self-improvement, and developing future leaders of the RMC.”

The Sandhurst competition was born more than 50 years ago when the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst presented USMA with a British officer’s sword intended to be the prize for a competition that promotes military excellence among cadets. The original mission statement describes the competition as an opportunity to “provide the Corps of Cadets with a challenging and rewarding regimental skills competition, which will enhance professional development and military excellence in selected soldier skills.”

RMC was the only Canadian team entered in 2019, competing against 49 teams from 14 countries, including the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Germany, Chile and Japan, to name a few.

RMC has won the Sandhurst competition in 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009 and 2016.

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