DVIDS – News – The 1st Battalion, 173rd Infantry Regiment prepares for a new era of combat-focused marksmanship


(Eglin Air Force Base, Fla.) – Members of the Alabama National Guard’s 1st Battalion, 173rd Infantry Regiment ushered in a new era in Army marksmanship during annual training at Eglin Force Base, August 3-6, 2020. Released in July 2019, “TC 3-20.40 Training and Qualification-Individual Weapons” or “Dot-40” revises the qualification of marksmanship to simulate a more accurate live fire situation.

The new scenario, which is expected to become the record qualification in October 2020, reduces the time required from around 20 minutes per shooter to around 4 minutes per shooter.

Pfc. Marshal Cornelius said the course was tougher but a welcome change.

“The course is a little more difficult. It made me a little more nervous at first,” said Cornelius.

“But the transition to the new course was easier than expected, we practiced in the new scenario as if we had never shot before. I like it, I was able to shoot like an expert again.”

In the current course, soldiers take control from a tower and fire 20 rounds in a supported prone position, 10 rounds in an unsupported prone position, and 10 rounds while kneeling.

During the new course, soldiers will not receive commands from the tower and will start in a standing position, then progress to prone unsupported, then prone supported, kneel supported, and finally to standing supported. Soldiers will use a barricade and will have 8-10 seconds to move around and change magazines.

“This course, in my opinion, will give us a more accurate picture of a soldier,” said Sgt. Jarrod Bryant.

In combat, no one tells you when to “switch magazines or when to reload,” Bryant said.

Staff Sgt. Jason Kirkley said he is very excited that the new soldiers will have the opportunity to train while they fight.

“It’s definitely a better workout,” Kirkley said. “No sane person will shoot without cover in a prone position unless he absolutely has to.” Kirkley said that’s the scenario presented in the old test.

The new scenario forces the soldiers to learn how to shoot from cover. This requires soldiers to be comfortable with real life scenarios.

While the new test only became the official test in October 2020, members of the 173rd Infantry Regiment are always ready for a new challenge.

“The cover-up definitely makes it harder,” Cornelius said. “But with all training, ‘slow is soft and soft is fast.'”


Date taken: 15.08.2020
Date posted: 15.08.2020 11:36
Story ID: 376076

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