Steele Slingin’ Officers
Lt Jim Katsaras
9 March 2009
On March 4th all of the officers were called on to do PT with the CO. Initially, when word came down that we were doing PT with the CO; I’m sure most of us thought we would be going out on a nice “leisurely stroll” around base. We were later informed that we would be “Pounding Track” …Piece of cake, right?!
The morning of the 4th was bright and sunny as we waited to find out exactly what our jobs would entail. We were split into two rough and tough work parties. The first work party consisted of B and C Sqns and they were tasked with doing maintenance on tanks in the Tank Barn. Road wheels, idlers, and track were but a few items replaced on the Leopard C2s. The second work party, consisting of RHQ, HQ and Recce Sqns, were tasked with removing track pads and breaking track for reconditioning.
Anyone who brought their “Mother’s arms” to this PT session was in serious trouble. A couple of the officers were holding pry bars with their left hand, while trying to strike the end with a hammer using their OTHER left hand, in order to remove the end connectors. Others tried to remove end connectors by hitting them extremely hard with their purse. The majority of the officers however, caught on relatively quickly and put on a good showing. The sweat started to pour around 0815hrs for most of us and stopped close to 1030hrs while in the shower.
For anyone who was yet to have any tank training, this day was a very enlightening experience. They got the opportunity to see what the men go through when they replace and maintain track. To have this kind of practical insight on the things that soldiers under your command have to do regularly is invaluable.
The concept of teamwork was also reinforced, as the job ran much smoother and more efficient when everyone sorted themselves out. As far as the PT session went, it was like every other workout, you get out what you put in. It was evident that most people “Poundin’ Track” were getting quite a bit out of it. A chance to get dirty and put on the coveralls was a welcome opportunity and a lot of fun, especially for the three Maintenance SMEs, Cpl Dunhpy, Tpr Brough and Tpr Chase, who got a front row seat.
Recce Sqn was in top form, chewing pads off with their teeth, and breaking track with their bare hands. Like a fine oiled machine we worked as one…or something like that.
Hard physical labour I find to be very gratifying as it gives you a sense of pride upon completion and little extra – SORE SHOULDERS.
Unfortunately the pictures supplied for this unusual event were unusable, therefore there is actually no proof that the Officer's pounded any track.