Soldiers contest 130-year-old shooting trophy at Murray Bridge Training Area

The RAAF's No. 3 Security Forces Squadron has taken out this year's Simpson Trophy.

This post was contributed by Captain Diana Jennings.

It was an historic win for the Royal Australian Air Force’s No. 3 Security Forces Squadron, which took out the Simpson Trophy competition on its 130th anniversary at the Murray Bridge Training Area.

Squadron Leader Grant Harvey said it was great his team was able to attend Australia’s oldest military shooting competition this year.

“It’s a real honour to compete in a joint environment with the Army and we always welcome the opportunity to test our skills,” Squadron Leader Harvey said. 

Using the EF88 rifle, more than 60 competitors completed a rifle practice 3A (RP3A), with the individual top shot going to Private Stefan Dawidowski from 10/27 Battalion Royal South Australia Regiment. 

“I really enjoyed the shoot,” Private Dawidowski said.

“RP3A allows Defence personnel to enhance their combat behaviours and it makes me proud to now be a part of history.”

Individual top shot and team winners were presented with the striking silver trophy and three-band musket by Simpson family descendants Ant and Nick.

The winning team from No. 3 Security Forces Squadron and individual top shot winner Private Stefan Dawidowski of 10th/27th RSAR pose with the historic Simpson Trophy and musket on its 130th anniversary. Photo: ADF.

The competition carries on the legacy of Alfred Mueller Simpson, who established the Simpson Trophy fund in 1890 by donating his parliamentary salary. 

“We’re thrilled to be associated with the competition after all these years and it’s great to see it going from strength to strength with such a great turn-out,” Nick said.

The Simpson family, including fifth-generation descendant Rory, were transported from their home to Murray Bridge by the 3rd/9th Light Horse South Australian Mounted Rifles in a convoy of protected mobility vehicles.

Personnel from 9th Brigade also conducted an intra-unit shooting competition.

Soldiers tested their marksmanship skills during live-fire shoots, including a close-range shoot at the 100m open range and live fire nine using the light support weapon as well as rifle practices by day and night. 

Upholding their record of excellence within the brigade, soldiers from 10th/27th Battalion Royal South Australia Regiment B Company took out first place team honours with Lance Corporal Jordan Banks securing the individual top shot of the day. 

After a demanding year for ADF units across South Australia, the successful event displays a resolute commitment to maintain and execute vital capabilities as well as value tradition.

Leading Aircraftman Breen Canning of No. 3 Security Force Squadron conducts RP3A during the Simpson Trophy shooting competition. Photo: ADF.

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