Okay, I just have to say it…

Now, there is absolutely nothing wrong with people shooting extreme long range shots, in fact, I encourage it. It is very challenging and will test your skills and knowledge. But, I do take issue with this recent phenomena of what people like to call “World Record Sniper Shots”. Such as this one:

World Record Sniper Shot

This was the most recent one, 3 miles, “confirmed” in January of this year. Or maybe it is this 2.6 mile shot by a russian in October of 2017

World Record Sniper Shot

Or this one that happened about the same time as the Russian one. 2.8 miles this time

Record long range shot

At least in the last article they do not call it a “sniper shot”. These shots have been getting a lot of attention and they are impressive… kind of. The thing I personally don’t like is that they care calling them “sniper shots”. If you read the article from January, the new recorded holder was excited because he hit the target on “only” his 8th shot, compared to the 30+ shots it took the previous record holders to hit. Guess he was a bit more lucky than the other guys. Not sure this fits the mantra of One Shot, One Kill. It would probably be a bit more appropriate if we started calling these records something like “New World Record Longest Spray and Pray Shot”. There is some skill and capability with the systems, but obviously, looking at the setup below, they would not be classified as “Sniper Ready”.

Doesn’t quite look combat practical

I guess the real problem is the media coverage versus the actual shooters and what they are doing. I do not recall hearing or seeing any of these shooters referring to their shots as “sniper shots”, but it is the media reporting it as such. Of  course, I do not see the shooters correcting the media either, maybe they tried and were just not successful, let me know if that was the case. Anyway, while the shots are impressive, maybe we can do our part to correctly label the feat, taking out the sniper part. There is a big difference between what our snipers do in harms way and what these specialized rifle builders are doing.

Enjoy and shoot straight

MEL

8 Comments

Jason

You’re arguing semantics in a world full of people with opinions and that world has no actual factual basis to define any of what you’re saying. You’re basically saying “in my opinion this doesn’t count as a sniper shot because this particular set of conditions wasn’t met.” but there is no officially adopted set of rules defining what you’re saying by anyone of merit. This really just seems like feathers ruffled elitist ranting. Whether it took 1 or 5000 attempts to make a 3 mile long shot, it still took place. Hardly considerable as “spraying and praying” when you’re dealing with single shots that actually factor in the coriolis effect for the distance they are traveling plus wind pressure changes over that distance. The world’s best “snipers” probably couldn’t make that shot if their life depended on it. Combat effective or not, this took a lot of skill and practice and poring over ballistics and data and all kinds of stuff no average or even highly skilled shooter would dare to try. So to try to invalidate it or undermine its significance and achievement simply because you don’t think it deserves the word “sniper” be attached to it is plain old ignorant. And uncouth. But…. That’s just my opinion right?

Reply
mele-02

Heh, yep… it is your opinion, and my post is having the desired effect… it gets people talking!
It certainly is a rant, but nope, has nothing to do with elitist, it just makes me scratch my head. Here is the thing. What does the term sniper mean? Does ANY of what these shots entail seem like sniping to you? Does any of the equipment look combat capable to you? Just trying to clear up misconceptions and keep the definition of what a sniper really does grounded in reality. Nope, you will never see a sniper make a 5000 yard hit. Why muddy the water and call them sniper shots? So essentially, I am an ANTI-ELITIST. I don’t want people thinking this is what sniping is. Instead, help people realize it really is 90% fieldcraft, only 10% shooting.

Keep the discussion going
MEL

Reply
FN-Whitney

Anybody that can line up a shot at 3 miles and hit is great but that does not make that person a sniper. I have seen many civilians bench rest shooters who were outstanding marksmen but that alone does not make them a sniper. No disrespect intended toward these shooters, just the way I see it. I can’t make a hit at 3 miles, I’m still working on 1 mile.

Reply
Dale Pratt

If you try long enough and have the right equipment. …almost anyone could be successful, we didn’t get to the moon on our first launch either, it was try and learn as we go!

Reply
Mike

Mel, I agree with you 100% on every point. This is not about the shot(s). It’s about the using the term “Sniper”. The problem is that we live in a world where it seems everybody is a wannabe and has to have one of those cool “badass” tags. Why else call this sniper competition? Call it what it is – extreme long-range marksmanship. What bothers me even more, though, is the people who go for these 500-yd – to mile or more when “hunting”.

BTW: Jason is so far out in left field to not even be worth a response.

Reply
Komlev

Well, public (and incidentally major portion of media people) is quite happy to think that “sniper” equals “long range shooter”. Being informed is opportunity, not obligation, after all. And headlines, the cheesier, the better, provide clicks and sales.

Now, “world record” claims are pointless, indeed. For a competition to have records, rules should be established. Quite a few shooters provided accounst of shooting 2000+y target after having to make X shots to zero. Stuff provided by Finaccuracy guys, for example, is always interesting. It is the moment A. claims to make World Record Shot, or some journo jumps up and begins spreading that, when a rich, thick smell of ******** rises into the air.

As of round count and its relationship to “true” combat shootng…well, circumstances vary. Craig Harrison, the shooter of a team which reportedly dispatched two Taliban machinegunner from 2.4km away (with “mere” 338 LM, making the exploit even more impressive), said it took them 9 shots to zero. Certainly not an ideal cold-bore shot, but they had luxury of tactical situation and gear (supressor, range basically preventing quick and efficient detection and retaliation, etc.) to shoot a lot and compensate for variables.

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Blkgnmn

When a person who learns to do a few things (skills) , “as well as” or “just like” a US Marine , doesn’t mean he can be called a Marine by the media or anyone else. The same with a “Sniper”. What I think is a 3 mile shot was made by a “marksman”. Most of the general public has a negative attitude towards the word “Sniper”. The term should be used correctly, that’s all I’m saying.

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Starky

A heck of a shot? Yes! Would it be fun to try? Heck yes! Now it’s time to be honest. The set up has no practical purpose in the field but for punching paper. There is no comparisons between this and what is required of our military or law enforcement snipers. So to coin this a World Record Sniper Shot is BULL PUCKY. Call it what it is a long range precision rifle shot. A damn long range shot. Congratulations on making the shot, but it has nothing in common with what is required of a sniper. Let me know when the military and law enforcement add this to the training curriculum. Maybe then it can be coined a sniper shot. You’ll excuse me if I don’t hold my breath waiting for it.

Reply

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