The 2018 47th Winston P. Wilson/AFSAM Sniper Championship combined report is available here.
2018 WINSTON P. WILSON MACHINE GUN COMPETITION SHOOTS FOR NATIONAL GUARD EXPERTISE
National Guard Marksmanship Training Center
Story by Army Sgt. Richard W. Hoppe
Sunday, April 22, 2018
ROBINSON MANEUVER TRAINING CENTER, Ark. – Thirty-two National Guard soldiers representing 11 states competed in the 47th Annual Winston P. Wilson (WPW) Machine Gun Championship hosted by the National Guard Marksmanship Training Center (NGMTC) at Robinson Maneuver Training Center, Ark. from April 15-21.
The Machine Gun Championship is one of several events included in the Winston P. Wilson Championship, a prestigious marksmanship competition that tests the skills of some of the finest military marksmen in the world.
Michigan National Guard won the title of overall team champions and Chiefs 50, taking home a combined 29 awards between two, two-man teams and proving their mettle for the second year in a row. Michigan takes marksmanship seriously and provides their teams training prior to the matches, but when facing the top marksmen from around the nation, nothing is to be expected.
“This is my second time winning this. We came down last year and had absolutely no idea what we were doing or what we were in for,” said Sgt. David Dohnal with Company D, 3rd Battalion, 126th Infantry Regiment and winner of the Top Machine Gunner award. “We came down here and we did a whole lot better than I thought we were going to do. I actually had no idea that I was going to win until the awards ceremony.”
The competitions are conducted under the directive of the Chief of the National Guard Bureau to help improve the effectiveness of National Guard Soldiers. Competitions like these help inspire Soldiers to advance their skills in an experience-rich environment that is both challenging and enjoyable.
“What we’re trying to accomplish with the match is to develop an improved standard of marksmanship amongst National Guard Soldiers and Airmen, and to allow them to compete with each other and learn from each other,” said Air Force Capt. Barry Owens, Air National Guard Program Manager for the Marksmanship Training Center. “Because everybody has experience that they can share when they come here and everyone picks up some new ideas and training value.”
The collection of skills available at the competition ensures that everyone gains important weapons skills to take back to their units, whether they’re new or experienced. Every year the Marksmanship Training Center works to improve their matches and the advanced training that they can offer Soldiers and Airmen.
“I think they stepped it up this year … it was a little bit more competitive this year than it was last year,” said Dohnal. “I’ve really enjoyed myself. There was no hesitation to come back.”
Newcomers and younger Soldiers are encouraged to attend the matches in order to help build knowledge and expertise that can be disseminated throughout the National Guard. The Marksmanship Training Center offers a free-flow of professional knowledge comprised of years of experience between leadership and cadre alike.
“The vast majority of [cadre] are SAW-E qualified. They went to Small Arms Weapons Expert course, so they know quite a bit and they can teach you a lot,” said Spc. Aaron Newton, a Combat Engineer with Company A, 239th Brigade Engineer Battalion. “Especially 1st Sgt. Marchand, Master Sgt. Lindsey, and Maj. Stapp. All of them are very knowledgeable and can teach you a lot as long as you’re willing to listen.”
Many of the competitors and cadre look forward to next year’s Machine Gun Championship and add to the wealth of knowledge that the National Guard has to offer – and perhaps send a few more rounds down range.
“Come out here. Have fun,” said Dohnal. “You’re getting paid to shoot machine guns. It doesn’t get any better than that.”
For photographs from the ceremony visit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/ngmtcpao/albums/72157668182554668
WPW Machine Gun Match Overall Team
Champions: Sgt. David Dohnal and Cpl. Nolan Davis, Michigan National Guard, Team Alpha
Overall 2nd place: Staff Sgt. Noah Matthews and Sgt. Nathan Forrest, Alabama National Guard, Team Alpha
Overall 3rd place: Staff Sgt. Thomas Davis and Cpl. Michael Parris, Colorado National Guard, Team Alpha
WPW Machine Gun Match Top Machine Gunner
Champion: Sgt. David Dohnal, Michigan National Guard Team Alpha
2nd place: Sgt. Nicholas Peters, Michigan National Guard, Team Bravo
3rd place: Sgt. Maximil Archambault, Vermont National Guard, Team Alpha
WPW Machine Gun Match Top Assistant Gunner
Champion: Sgt. Jared Parahm, Michigan National Guard, Team Bravo
2nd place: Cpl. Nolan Davis, Michigan National Guard, Team Alpha
3rd place: Staff Sgt. Kyle McRae, Vermont National Guard, Team Bravo
Thirty-two National Guard members representing 11 states are participating in the 2018 Machine Gun Winston P. Wilson Championship. State teams represented include Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Maine, Michigan, North Dakota, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Vermont. The match consists of 13 courses of fire and three weapons systems over five days.
The Winston P. Wilson Championship is a national level competitive marksmanship combat match conducted by the National Guard Marksmanship Training Center. It is an annual event to promote combat marksmanship and training. The Winston P. Wilson Championship consist of the small arms, sniper, and machine gun. In September 1971, the MTU established the first ever Winston P. Wilson matches at Camp Robinson, Arkansas as the National Guard’s premier competitive event.
To see photos from day one, visit our Flickr page: 2018 WPW Machine Gun Championship Day One
Currently there are only eight states that have not said they are attending this year out of the 54 States and Territories.
Periodically this map will be updated to reflect the current commitments to participate in this year’s 2018 Winston P. Wilson Small Arms Championships. So check back here.
For more info on the matches click here.
~1st place in overall team and individual at All Army
by Maj. Theresa Austin, National Guard Marksmanship Training Center
ROBINSON MANEUVER TRAINING CENTER, Ark. – The National Guard took first overall individual and team during this years’ 2018 U.S. Army Small Arms (“All Army”) Championship at Ft. Benning, Ga. Mar. 11-17, 2018.
The National Guard sent 11 teams to challenge 26 Active Army and Reserve teams with Missouri National Guard as the overall team small arms champions and Sgt. Justus Densmore with the Texas National Guard taking home the M-1 Grand as the overall individual small arms champion.
“Performances like this show how military competitions directly enhance Soldier lethality and combat effectiveness,” said Maj. David Stapp, operations chief for the National Guard Marksmanship Training Center (NGMTC).
National Guard Soldiers and Airmen really show their value during a performance like this..
“The National Guard leverages marksmanship competitions to help improve unit and individual readiness, especially through the use of the National Guard Marksmanship Training Center,” said Stapp. “The NGMTC conducts marksmanship competitions that give Soldiers the experience and knowledge to be good subject matter experts who then go back and train their units.”
National Guard members who attend these competitions, whom have received this experience and knowledge, must practice often not only with their team, but also on their own time.
“We practice, on our team, quite a bit in our personal life,” said Sgt. Adam Michael Mathis, Illinois National Guard team member; and we perform well here at the competition, take it back to our units, and increase our overall unit qualification scores on the ranges.
When it comes to competing in marksmanship events at this level, you get what you give. Many put in their own time and money.
“My guys put in a lot of work on their own time before the match,” said Staff Sgt. Michael Richey, Missouri National Guard team captain, and “they got out of it what they put in.”
Sharing knowledge is essential in the National Guard, which is evident from six of the 11 states placing in the top three of each category. The top National Guard teams who took home first, second, or third included: Missouri, Iowa, Wisconsin, Vermont, North Dakota, and Illinois. Each of these teams consist of a four-man squad competing with primary and secondary weapon systems.
Missouri is really bringing the heat this year. They placed within the top three overall teams for every team category during this competition.
“All Army was just our warm up,” said Richey, the team captain. “We’re bringing the same team to the Winston P. Wilson Matches.”
The Winston P. Wilson (WPW) National Championship is hosted by the National Guard Marksmanship Training Center and is like the “All Army,” but is solely between the Army and Air National Guards in the 54 states and territories.
The WPW will be held April 28th– May 3rd at Robinson Maneuver Training Center, North Little Rock, Ark. For more information about getting involved, contact the National Guard Marksmanship Training Center at 501-212-4531 or visit us on Facebook.
Overall Category Scores:
U.S. Army Small Arms Overall Individual Champion
|1||Densmore, Justus, SGT, Texas ARNG||2,011 – 46|
|2||Mccombs, Jeremy, SPC, Colorado ARNG||1,972 – 49|
|3||Tucker, Robert, SGT, Vermont ARNG||1,949 – 47|
U.S. Army Small Arms Team Champions
|1||Missouri National Guard||3791 – 125|
|2||Iowa National Guard||3761 – 111|
|3||Wisconsin National Guard||3633 – 81|
U.S. Army Service Pistol Individual Champion
|1||Tucker, Robert, SGT, Vermont ARNG||788 – 32|
|2||Mccombs, Jeremy, SPC, Colorado ARNG||764 -35|
|3||Larsen, Nicholas, 1LT, USA||758 – 28|
U.S. Army Service Pistol Team Champions
|1||Missouri National Guard||1533 – 92|
|2||Vermont National Guard||1471 – 68|
|3||North Dakota National Guard||1448 – 52|
U.S. Army Service Rifle Individual Champion
|1||Densmore, Justus, SGT, Texas ARNG||939 – 19|
|2||Mccombs, Jeremy, SPC, Colorado ARNG||930 – 14|
|3||Goldade, Tyler, SGT, North Dakota ARNG||929 – 16|
U.S. Army Service Rifle Team Champions
|1||Iowa National Guard||1325 – 41|
|2||Missouri National Guard||1216 – 33|
|3||Wisconsin National Guard||1195 – 16|
U.S. Army Multi-Gun Match Individual Champion
|1||Fuentes, Rafael, SSG, USAR||362|
|2||Brotherston, Curtis, 2LT, USAR||352|
|3||Balsley, Brad, SSG , USA||322|
U.S. Army Multi-Gun Match Team Champions
|1||Artic Warrior A-Team, USA||1049|
|2||Missouri National Guard||1042|
|3||Illinois National Guard||1036|
The six top National Guard Teams:
Missouri Team: Staff Sgt. Michael Richey (ARNG), Sgt. David Ball (ARNG), 1st Sgt. James Phelps (ARNG), Staff Sgt. Jerry Dement (ARNG)
Iowa Team: Tech. Sgt. Micah Larson (ANG), Sgt. 1st Class Paul Deugan (ARNG), Sgt. Karl Johnk (ARNG), Staff Sgt. Tyson Fisher (ARNG)
Wisconsin Team: Sgt. Brandon Swanson, ARNG, Sgt. 1st Class Jordan Cegler (ARNG), Staff Sgt. Jameson Nelms (ARNG), Staff Sgt. Robert Marciniak (ANG)
Vermont Team: Sgt. Robert Tucker (ARNG), Senior Airman Justin Oddy (ANG), Sgt. Maxim Nickerson (ARNG), Staff Sgt. Robert Marciniak (ANG)
Illinois Team: Staff Sgt. Jacob Blount (ARNG), Sgt. 1st Class Tracy Mix (ARNG), Sgt. Adam Mathis (ARNG), Sgt. Nolan Murray (ARNG)
North Dakota Team: Senior Airman Gavin Rook (ANG), Sgt. Andrew Maley (ARNG), Staff Sgt. Matthew Jasper (ANG), Sgt. Tyler Goldade (ARNG)
by Theresa Austin, Maj. National Guard Marksmanship Training Center
ROBINSON MANEUVER TRAINING CENTER, Ark. – Last year, 53 states and territories confirmed to participate in the 47th Annual Winston P. Wilson (WPW) National Championships prior to moving the matches due to the possibility of a government shutdown, and we are now half way to the goal of all participating this year.
As of Mar. 22, 2018, the National Guard is half way towards the goal with 30 states and territories confirmed participation out of all 54. Not only do we host the national matches, but also concurrently, a multi-national competition drawing in competitors from across the globe.
WPW is a training opportunity, hosted by the NGMTC each year, which is held concurrently with NGB’s multi-national competition the Armed Forces Skill at Arms Meeting (AFSAM). AFSAM currently has Canada, United Kingdom, Italy, and Poland competing as well as other military components such as the U.S. Army Reserve, and U.S. Army 7th Infantry Division.
Change your state from red to green by contacting us. All you need is a four-man team, which NGMTC will pay to attend.
The intent behind these competitions is learning to be a better marksmen, and with the additional focus of WPW being that these competitors take this knowledge and share it with others in their home units. Every competition is a training opportunity, with the ultimate goal of increasing weapons familiarization and skill for increased battlefield survivability and combat readiness.
by Kathrine Grandori, Sgt. National Guard Marksmanship Training Center
ROBINSON MANEUVER TRAINING CENTER, Ark. – The Winston P. Wilson National Championships at the National Guard Marksmanship Training Center will begin in April 2018. Several states have already submitted their letters of intent (LOI), as of March 3, 2018, and the goal is to have all 50 states and territories participate.
Many may think that this competition is only valuable as a “play to win,” but when it comes to marksmanship in the National Guard, we must “train to win.” Every competition is an opportunity to increase readiness and learn new skills. Marksmen always learn from other participants and improve their skills. That knowledge will return to their home states and fellow service members.
The NGMTC will be tracking confirmations to attend on this map. Be proactive with your marksmanship program and help NGMTC achieve the goal of participation across all 50 states and territories in 2018. Contact your state marksmanship training coordinator (SMC) or marksmanship regional coordinator (MAC) to get involved.
Click here for more information on 2018 WPW Sniper, Machine gun, and small arms, as well as AFSAM and CNGB.