Exercise Steele Sabre 2021
By Tpr Nixdorf, 1st Troop, D Sqn, LdSH(RC)
The exercise for D Squadron, LdSH(RC) kicked off with live range qualification shoots for 40 mm TAPV and 25 mm, Coyote and LAV 6. Being a student on the 40 mm course and after completing all my tests and simulation shoots, I was excited for my opportunity to conduct live fire shoots. After a few days of shooting, both day and night, all students were successful.
The primary goal of the Troop and Squadron training was to qualify soldiers to level 2 and 3 live fire maneuvers. Level 3 is an armoured troop moving, shooting and destroying all enemies in bounds. During live ranges is when I started to understand that the gunner’s job is not just engaging targets but also making sure the vehicle and crew are able to define and kill all enemies. At this point I started to understand that to make a vehicle ready to fight it took everyone in the crew working together as a team. As a new gunner, I was surprised at my own abilities to control the 40mm DRWS while shooting both static and on the move. The live ranges did not take long to finish, but it helped focus the gunners for the moving and shooting. The level 3 range was hands down the highlight of my exercise because I had never shot so many rounds, I had a blast and gained much needed experience gunning with the DRWS 40mm.
After many rounds were fired and live fire runs were now complete, it was time to move on to the Armoured Crew Commander course. I was tasked as OpFor, where we would set up a defensive position and act as the enemy. We would try to “kill” the students as they advanced to our position. Seeing the students advance gave me more understanding of how an armoured squadron moves in order to destroy the enemy.
The biggest take away I had from this exercise is that as an armoured crewman I have two jobs: destroy the enemy and help my troop.