TWENTYNINE PALMS, Calif. - The Combat Center hosted its Combat Center DieSeL Classic at the base qualification Range, Jan. 17, 2015.
This is one of several competitions the Combat Center shooting team participates in each year. The DieSeL Classic is the mid-range match, a competition where shooters fire from the 300, 500 and 600 yard lines. Marines, sailors and service members have several opportunities to fire on the range year-round.
“Most of our competitions are on weekends,” said Lance Cpl. Brandon Debolt, 1st Tank Battalion, native of Philadelphia, Penn. “Marines can come to the range, they’ll get a rifle and pistol issued to them and they just register for any range fees that are needed. After that, they get to enjoy a day of shooting on the range.”
The competition is split up into individual and team matches. Camp Pendleton, Marine Corps Recruiting District San Diego, and Marine Corps Air Station Miramar are some of the bases the Combat Center shooting team has competed against. For the past two years the Combat Center shooting team has brought home two trophies.
“I think it’s good, because you get two big trophies that you get to bring back, so it’s a little bit of bragging rights, but most importantly it shows what we’re doing here at the Combat Center is working,” said Cpl. James Marker, Marine Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Squadron 1, native of Wausau, Wis.
Competitions like this bolster camaraderie; it gives Marines from different units the chance to work toward a common goal. Although there’s a pride in competing and winning competitions, there is always the Marine’s primary mission at play; training.
“It brings camaraderie,” said Staff Sgt. Joseph T. Modula, precision weapons specialist, headquarters battalion, native of Columbus, Ohio. “You bring units together that have never worked together. Marines learn how to shoot better. I look at this as not only is it fun to compete but it’s also training. You’re constantly training. So when you do go into combat or have to pull the trigger, you know what you’re doing.”