POTD: New Zealand Army’s First Female Sniper

    Copyright © 2020 New Zealand Defence Force

    Photo Of The Day – For the first time in a very long time we got a tip from one of our readers “down-under” and quite an interesting one. The picture is from a New Zealand Army sniper course. One of the two soldiers who managed to pass the course is the New Zealand Army’s first female sniper.

    The course was also the first time they tested their new Barrett MRAD Sniper Rifles. The multi-barrel system of these rifles provides two calibre options to the sniper: .308 Win or .338 Lapua Magnum. The snipers are using the Nightforce ATACR scope with the TreMor3 reticle.

    Here’s an excerpt from the New Zealand Defence Force article titled “The art of seeing through the tussock” telling about this event.

    You have two hours to move within 200 metres of the observers and fire your first blank round. You start about one kilometre out, give or take. You cannot be seen at all. If you are seen, you fail.

    Each year only 12 soldiers devote six weeks of their lives honing skills which they hope will match the exacting standards required to emerge out the other side as a badged sniper of New Zealand Army. Historically less than half make the grade. In 2020 just six passed.

    Private (PTE) D and PTE M from 2nd/1st Battalion, Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment were two of the soldiers to make the grade.

    PTE D who was already posted to the sniper cell, said he had an idea of what the role of a sniper entailed, and wanted more advanced training.

    “I wanted to challenge myself, be confident with navigation and to gain a better understanding of what snipers actually do,” he said.

    PTE M said she wanted to do the course as she enjoys a challenge and is always after the pursuit of knowledge.

    “The sniper is someone who by mastering their skills and a little bit of luck, can directly change things for good, or bad in the course of battle.

    “If you want to measure yourself against some of the best, being a sniper isn’t a bad yardstick,” she said.

    The course consists of six weeks’ worth of theory, shooting, judging distance, observing, reporting information and stalking an objective.

    Sniper theory involves learning about sniper roles, employment, ballistic theory and working the kestrel (weather meters).

    The full article and photo can be found here. (Copyright © 2020 New Zealand Defence Force)

    Did you spot the spotter in the picture above?

    This should also be of interest to you: POTD: Barrett MRAD Sniper Rifles of New Zealand