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Quotation | Citation

What some 2008 RMC Sandhurst participants had to say:

“This year the competition events and the scoring system were radically changed. The changes favoured an institution like the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst (RMAS) and Westpoint, as the focus on military skills is much more prevalent than RMC throughout their program. The RMC team was very well prepared and motivated to win, however based on the scoring gap from both UK teams (almost 200 points), it appears the chances of winning the competition this year were not great. RMAS had two very strong teams with x-NCO experience and training. More to the point, we got beat and we got beat bad by the UK teams, which will definitely be a motivator for next year.

I want to focus everything I say or write from my perspective in a positive light. The team and staff put a great deal of effort into this team and should be congratulated. Mr. Ryan and the team did an exceptional job and finished very respectable 5th place. Many lessons learned were gained from a training and competition perspective, and there is no doubt that the RMC team will be back stronger than ever next year to redeem themselves.

The team and staff should be proud of the results.”

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Capt Jeff Monaghan
Sandhurst team 2IC

“The team worked really hard this year – training twice a day for 6, sometimes 7, days a week – on top of school. The competition was extremely intense, the hardest one I’ve ever seen. I think we did pretty good – evidentially not the best, but ended up with a respectable finish. The boys really did well, I am really proud of the progress we made since the beginning of the year. It was the best leadership opportunity for me as well. With the experience gained, next year will be a hell of a year.”

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ryan.jpg24054 Connor Ryan – Team Captain
10 Squadron
IV – Space Science
32U/PLT

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“My thoughts from the 2008 Sandhurst Competition follow. I would be happy to elaborate on my perspective of the team, its training over the past few months, and what we are doing right now to prepare for next years competition.

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The objective of RMC participating in the Sandhurst Competition is two fold: to improve the leadership and augment the development of those who participate and secondly, to represent the college in a favorable manner on the international scale. On 03 May we as a team produced a result, and at the end of the day whether it was good or bad is not really the main concern. What counts is what is done with those results, and what is drawn from them. The team learned a tremendous amount on competition day and these lessons are already being used in the development of a new training system for the team in the upcoming year. The squad will adapt to the new competition, adjust the Sandhurst program accordingly and return successful from westpoint in 2009.”

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blakie.jpg23984 Scott Blakie
CWC/COMA
IV – Mechanical Engineering
41U/AERE

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“Competition this year was very hard. It was pushed to new levels of success and the margin for error is now slim to none. We trained for 4 and a half months, we knew what we were doing but those damn brits knew it better. They arrived more prepared than us. They had a stacked team. But we keep our heads high and we WILL be back next year to challenge the new champion.”

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houle.jpg24743 Samuel Houle
13 Squadron
I – Arts
23U/INF

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“We had a pretty rookie team this year. Only two of our 15 members ran the competition in previous years. So for the rest of us, we didn’t really know what to expect. I was picked to be on the 15 but I was not originally one of the running nine members. When we went down to Westpoint to practice some of the obstacles, 2 of our teamates got injured and I ended up running the competition.

Running the Sandhurst competition was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do but it was worth it. There were times when I was running that I wanted to stop but I didn’t. The support we had from everyone was incredible. I don’t know about the rest of the team, but for me, I loved having the fans there. That bus of 50 RMC cadets was such a morale boost.

There isn’t too much to say about the training we had. We trained 2 (sometimes 3) times a day and we tried to hammer out the basic skills we needed to win the competition.

The mini competitions were very helpful too. The first one we had in Kingston really helped us come together as a team. The second one we had in Petawawa and it really forced us to focus on our skills.

Overall, it was an amazing semester. Good times for sure. The team is really close now.”

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arsenault.jpg24577 Jeremy Arsenault
2 Squadron
II – Business Administration
41U/AERE

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The view from a fan:

Last weekend I had the opportunity to travel to Westpoint and watch the RMC Sandhurst team as they competed in the annual sandhurst competition. Now to give some readers a background, RMC has been victorious in this competition for the past 3 years so expectations where high. There were a good number of cadets on hand to cheer the team (40-50 I would guess) and spirits were high as the team got underway on the course. Observing from the sidelines it seemed as if the team was flying through the course and was going to do well. Unfortunatley it was not enough to win as they ended up placing 5th on the course.

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The loss was a dissapointment for sure, but there are lessons to be taken away from the experience. The team fought for national pride and all of the cadets who came to cheer rallied around the flag. At the end of the day it made anyone who watched the team proud to say that Canada was represented at the competition. However there is one thing I would like to address. That is the tendency of some cadets to explain away the loss. Some have taken the attitude that because the team lost the loss must be rationalized (format of the course was changed, the brits get more combat training etc). In my opinion it is what it is, a loss. I am damn proud of the team for competing and representing both he college and the nation well, but I think anyone who rationalizes away their loss does the team a disservice. Instead, we as an RMC community should be proud of the team and turn our focus to next year, and another shot at the title.

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paish.jpg24359 Stephen Paish
8 Squadron
III – Military and Strategic Studies
22U/ARTY

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