Competition builds esprit de corps, honors ‘Gimlet’ history

| July 20, 2017 | 0 Comments
Soldiers from 1st Battalion, 21st Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division participate in the Gimlet Challenge, a competition to prove who is the best and which company will earn the right of the Gimlet Drill.

Soldiers from 1st Battalion, 21st Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division participate in the Gimlet Challenge, a competition to prove who is the best and which company will earn the right of the Gimlet Drill.

Story and photo by
1st Lt. Jordan Linder
2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team
25th Infantry Division Public Affairs

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — Humid air made breathing difficult as the sounds of boots on gravel made their way up East Range Road. As the sun rose and day broke, Soldiers out-of-breath but motivated Soldiers covered in sweat ran toward the obstacle course, here, to embrace the challenge before them. Each team wanted to be the fastest and to complete the training with the least amount of penalties.

Soldiers from 1-21st Inf. Regt. 2nd IBCT, 25th ID are participating in the Gimlet Challenge, a physical fitness competition to prove who is the best and which company will earn the right of the Gimlet Drill, July 14.

Soldiers from 1-21st Inf. Regt. 2nd IBCT, 25th ID are participating in the Gimlet Challenge, a physical fitness competition to prove who is the best and which company will earn the right of the Gimlet Drill, July 14.

The Soldiers assigned to the 1st Battalion, 21st Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, competed in their annual Gimlet Challenge, a physical and mental test of the unit’s history and physical endurance.

Soldiers were divided into teams of four and began by running from Schofield Barracks to Wheeler Army Airfield and then to East Range on a 3-mile timed sprint.

“The Gimlet Challenge is a great way to foster esprit de corps within the battalion, everyone gets to participate,” said Staff Sgt. Erick Bradley of the Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1-21 Inf. Regt. “The tasks at hand allows new and experienced Soldiers to refine and practice their skills. Basic Soldier skills are not like riding a bike, you have to practice to remain proficient.”

Upon arriving to the obstacle course, teams faced five separate stations with tasks and obstacles to complete.
Gimlets were tested on their ability to assemble, perform a function checks and disassemble an M249 light machine gun, an M240 machine gun and an M4 carbine in less than 6 minutes. Any longer than 6 minutes and the team was penalized by time and burpees.

Other stations tasked Soldiers with assembling radio equipment, conducting communication checks, participating in a grenade toss and completing medical lane and memory tests.

Upon completion of the obstacles, Gimlets loaded up their rucks and moved back to the starting point on Schofield Barracks to complete their last challenge, a history test.

“Along the way, Gimlets received slips of paper with unit history that they needed to remember,” explained 1st Lt. James Murphy, the officer in charge of the Gimlet Challenge. “The final event, a history test, will help determine which team is the overall winner.”

The event started during the morning physical training hours and concluded around noon. The winning team was awarded Army Achievement Medals and bragging rights as the most knowledgeable and physically fit team during the challenge.

The winning team finished all obstacles and the 10-mile course with a time of 2 hours and 51 minutes. The team consisted of four Soldiers: Staff Sgt. Bradly Melton, Pfc. Class Aaron Revette, Spc. Pencer Solomon and Pfc. Class Hunter Davis.

While presenting these Gimlets with their awards, the commander of the 1-21st Inf. Regt., Lt. Col. James Hart noted, “The Gimlet Challenge represented a commitment to the organization to go the extra mile when necessary.”
By completing the Gimlet Challenge, Soldiers were able to touch on their unit history while fostering teamwork and perseverance.

“In the end, the event is really welcoming to new Soldiers,” added Bradley. “Newcomers get a sense of the history of the unit and what the Gimlet Battalion is all about.”

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