German soldiers fire new sniper rifle
(Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL

"German soldiers test new rifle at proving ground," By James Gilbert, Yuma Sun newspaper, July

13, 2016

The goal of a sniper is to shoot the enemy from afar, but to do so they need

the right type of weapon. That is why six Special Forces soldiers from the

German Army are at Yuma Proving Ground testing a new G-29 sniper rifle that

was recently purchased for their country's armed forces.

Perched atop an isolated hill in the Cibola Range on Tuesday, two snipers

fired five shots each with the new bolt-action sniper rifle at targets that

were 300, 500, 700, 900 and 1,100 meters away. The gun, made by C.G. Haenel,

fires an 8.6x70 mm (.338 Lapua Magnum) round and has a 1,500 meter range.

Sgt. Major Andreas Jung explained that the German military is replacing it's

G22/G23 rifles that have been in use since 1997 and while snipers are eager

to adopt the new weapon as well, they need to to make sure it works well in

all types of weather conditions.

Jung said during the testing they will be conducting an evaluation of the

gun's accuracy, checking its muzzle velocity, determining whether or not the

soldiers feel comfortable using it, and if it is actually a better rifle

than what they have been using.

"They like shooting the weapon," Jung said through an interpreter. "I think

they are pretty happy with it."

Test Officer Martin Hummel, who has worked at YPG since January as an

exchange engineer from Germany, said that the snipers wanted to subject the

rifle to rigorous operational testing in a realistic natural hot climate and

YPG met their needs for this.

He explained that Germany's climate is temperate and lacks the extreme

conditions needed to test the weapon. He said that while the soldiers could

do chamber tests on the G-29, it is not the same as testing it under actual

conditions.

"They want to use the rifle so they make sure it works in all types of

climate conditions." Hummel said.

The German soldiers will spend the week at YPG seeing how the G-29 handles

in hot weather, before heading to the installation's Tropic Regions Test

Center in Panama, where they will spend another week putting the weapon to

the test in tropical conditions.

During the testing, Col. Randy Murray, commanding officer at U.S. Army Yuma

Proving Ground, and Sgt. Major Christopher Prosser stopped by the site and

the German soldiers showed them the new rifle and let them take some shots

downrange.

James Gilbert can be reached at jgilbert@yumasun.com or 539-6854. Find him

on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/YSJamesGilbert or on Twitter @YSJamesGilbert