After two days of strenuous competitions, eight members from 2 Field Ambulance emerged victorious to claim glory for Canada at the 55th annual Army Medical Services Tactical Training Exercise (AMSTTE).
The team finished first overall and placed first for the international team.
“It’s a huge honour. These guys here, the teams that are competing, they really are some of the best in the world. They take this very seriously, train hard and work hard.
“We were going against highly experienced teams from highly experienced countries, who have operated all over the world. So, just competing beside them was humbling. When we found out we won, we were very shocked,” said MCpl. Michael Monardo, one of the competitors representing 2 Field Ambulance based in Petawawa.
AMSTTE is an annual competition that took place this year at Strensall Training Area in the United Kingdom from June 30 to July 2. It tests competitors on medical knowledge and abilities as well as their soldiering skills, leadership and physical fitness.
This year’s two-day event was attended by teams from Ireland, Norway, and Canada and 19 teams from the United Kingdom.
The Canadian team was comprised of seven medics and one officer.
The two days of taxing competition included walking upwards of 20 km, completing 300-metre shuttle rushes, one-mile stretcher carry, an obstacle course and a Commander’s challenge.
“It was tough. You definitely felt it was a competition. It was challenging,” recalled Monardo.
However, the medic says he’s proud of the way his team pulled together as one.
“We really came together, fantastic leadership, fantastic team work amongst us,” commented Monardo.
Although AMSTTE introduces friendly rivalry between the competing teams, the exercise is much more than just a competition.
“The primary goal is camaraderie, to sort of bring each other together, establish international ties, as well as get us to drive each other. Just the sheer nature of our jobs is highly physical, highly mentally strenuous. You have to be mentally precise in your actions as well as physically and mentally trained. So, these competitions like to highlight that,” said Monardo.
The competition also is an opportunity for the participating teams to simulate operations and share knowledge and experiences.