After months of preparation, scouring aircraft identification manuals, leadership courses, working out in the gym and endless hours practising drill in the rain, the RAF Cranwell competition team led by Cadet WO George Cory set of for RAF Cranwell and the Eastern Area section of the Air Squadron Trophy Competition on Saturday 26 November.
After a good full English in the Sergeants’ Mess the competition started. During the day the team performed magnificently coming 2nd in fitness after a brilliant solo effort by Amy Graham and sterling support from Oliver Wroe; 2nd in aircraft recognition, what George doesn’t know about military aircraft and their variants could be written on a postage stamp! The shooting team again ably lead by George and supported by the triumvirate of Miles Budden, Isaac Young and William Woods Ballard, came second but it was the drill where the team really excelled. George has had the whole team practising almost every lunch and evening for months and that diligence and commitment shone through as they put in the performance of their lives and won, in the words of the judging Drill Sergeant, “heads and shoulders above the rest”. “It brought a tear to the eye”, said Mr Jackson and Trevor Sanderson, our TEST NCO, looked pretty choked too!
To be beaten into fourth place overall, by Oundle School was a bitter pill to swallow as it is not since the days of Mr Cottrell that the team has made it through to the finals. Next year we will lose a magnificent group of Year 13 cadets, but the Year 12 are very strong and, with some excellent junior cadets waiting in the wings, there is certainly the potential to go that one step further!