CFSAC: Competition, Demos & Expo
KEAN DOHERTY
© 2011 FrontLine Defence (Vol 8, No 5)

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This year’s Canadian Forces Small Arms Concentration (CFSAC) at the Connaught Ranges in Kanata was a total success based on the number of shooters and the ongoing value of the event. “Anything we do to use the scarce amount of resources we have only helps improve the way we fight,” says Directorate of Army Training Competition Director LCol Dave MacLeod. “CFSAC has a reasonable cost for exceptional value.”

Previously, the shooting competitions were static, which is not typical of today’s conflict experience. A lot of work went into updating the two weeks of matches (shoots) including combat pistol and service rifle – to simulate more realistic conditions.

“We have to train as we fight, otherwise the training has no value,” MacLeod notes, in reference to the changes in the competition set out for this year’s 340 total competitors an increase of more than 110 shooters above the 2009 and 2010 events.

“CFSAC used to be just a bunch of soldiers lined up on a berm, either laying down or sitting there, plinking away at paper targets,” MacLeod recalls. “However, a few years back, the army pushed to make the matches more operationally relevant. Ranges were made more dynamic, starting with pistol competitions, to include room clearing scenarios, fire and movement and shooting from over and under cover.” By CFSAC 2010, all shoots were made dynamic, or as MacLeod puts it “operationalized.”

CFSAC Operations Officer Capt Paul Sutton, mentions the high number of soldiers that “came from all areas of the Canadian Army (Land Forces Atlantic Area, Quebec Area, Central Area and Western Area), as well as troops from the Royal Canadian Air Force and the Royal Canadian Navy. International teams included the United States Navy Combat Shooting Team and the Royal Netherlands Army Shooting team. The UK, impressively, sent a team each from the Royal Air Force, the British Army Combat Shooting Team and the Royal Navy Royal Marines Combat Shooting Team.”
 
Awards were presented in three main groupings: Open Class (all ­competitors, both domestic and international); Regular Force; and Reserve Force and RCMP members. The two Queen’s Medals for Champion Shot in Canada, are awarded to the top rifle marksmen from both the regular and reserve components of the CF.

The Regular Force Queen’s Medal was won by Canadian Air Force Captain Ken Barling from NORAD at Peterson Air Force Base, in Colorado Springs, USA.
 

Captain Ken Barlin (Aerospace and Telecommunications Engineering Support Squadron), the 2011 Queen’s Medal Champion Shot for the Regular Forces, is chaired off the range by his shooting team after the CF Small Arms Competitions that were held at the Connaught Range.

The Reserve Force Queen’s Medal was captured by Master Warrant Officer François Duchesneau, of the 2nd Canadian Rangers Patrol Group at Canadian Forces Base in St-Jean, Quebec.

Barling and Duchesneau emerged victorious from a group of 155 shooters who participated in the Combat Pistol matches and 287 marksmen who took part in the service rifle matches.
 
 
MWO François Duchesneau, the 2011 Queen’s Medal champion shot of the Primary Reserve, is Chaired off the range by his shooting team.

In addition to the full slate of shooting competitions, participants and military visitors had the opportunity to peruse goods and services at the Defence and Law Enforcement Expo. Companies displayed products such as tactical kit to military personnel and law enforcement officers. Some exhibitors also took advantage of the secure environment to demonstrate their lethal and non-lethal products. This part of the expo is a highlight for soldiers to take the unique opportunity to try out new weapons and other equipment.

Thanks to defence industry participation at the expo – especially Patron sponsor: Armament Technology; Master-level sponsors: Acklands-Grainger, Airborne Systems (now HDT), and FrontLine Magazines; and Cadet-level sponsors, Colt Canada, CTOMS, and M.D. Charlton – the proceeds of the expo pays the costs of all of the medals and trophy updates and defrays other costs incurred during the event. Next year’s event will also include fundraising in support of military families. They are looking forward to more military visitors in 2012.
 
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Kean Doherty is a journalist with more than 13 years of experience in the Canadian military and private defence sectors. He currently handles national law enforcement sales at Colt Canada.
© FrontLine Defence 2011

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