Camp Lejeune Marines take part in the Battle Challenge

CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. (WNCT) – Camp Lejeune Marines competed Wednesday in the Camp Lejeune Military Battle Challenge competition. It’s a unique fitness and ability-based military action competition designed for the U.S. Armed Forces.

The event got underway Wednesday at Goettge Memorial Field House and runs through Thursday. It’s co-sponsored by the Military Benefit Association (www.militarybenefit.org) and Marine Corps Community Services.

The creators of the challenge incorporated the cargo net climb, a knotted rope descent, wall surmount, ammunition resupply, low crawl, Jerry-Can shuffle, marksmanship tasks and a service member-down rescue.

“Most of them say they underestimated it because they get out there and they’re tired by the time they come down the rope,” said Roy L. Gibson, MBA Director of Outreach. “Then they’ve got all of these other things they have to do before they grab the dummy, which is 200 pounds of dead weight.”

The MCAS Battle Challenge is a team or individual competition open to Marines and all service members stationed at Camp Lejeune and Marine Corps Air Station, New River. Competitors sign up to run the course on the Battle Challenge website at www.battlechallenge.com. Competition times are blocked in two-hour increments from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on both days.

“When we get together as a group it kind of brings out the best in us,” Lance Corporal Jesse Rodriguez-Escobar said. “You feel that energy and it makes you want to put out more. That’s what the Marine Corps is about.”

Corporal Jessica Garcia, 2nd MHG, set a new record for the fastest female time.

“I just went as fast as I could, I ran to every obstacle and tried to beat the time,” Cpl. Garcia said. “That’s basically it, just focus, focus, focus and not think about the pain.”

The Battle Challenge is the newest competition created by On Target Challenge. It produces the internationally renowned Firefighter Combat Challenge. The Battle Challenge combines a fitness program that simulates a highly relevant series of nine battle-field-like skills required to be successful under physically challenging circumstances. It’s dubbed “Competition with a Purpose.”

“Not only is it relevant to training but it is a ton of fun,” said Gibson.

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