MILITARY MATTERS: Best Ranger Competition Winners Celebrated on Fort Benning

Published: Apr. 19, 2023 at 4:30 PM EDT
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - Some of the toughest soldiers in the world have been battling it out on Fort Benning. We are taking you inside the Best Ranger competition that just wrapped up a couple days ago.

“You represent the tip of the spear, leading the way,” GEN Gary Brito said.

The former top leader on Fort Benning is now the U-S Army’s commanding general of Training and Doctrine Command.

The champs of the 39th annual Best Ranger Competition are Army Captain Luke Ebeling and Specialist Justin Rein, the first time in 17 years that someone of his rank has been on a winning team. It also means soldiers from the 75th Ranger Regiment have won for the third year in a row this intense competition with 32 events on Fort Benning.

“Observing their incredible physical, mental, tactical and technical performance over the last 60+ hours was awesome,” Airborne & Ranger Training Brigade Commander COL Christopher Hammonds said.

The triumphant Ranger duo beat 55 other teams - all competing nonstop, day and night.

“I was extremely proud to see all of our Army, all the divisions and components represented in the grueling competition,’ GEN Brito said.

The Best Ranger competition not only happening on the Army installation, but part of it also in downtown Columbus this time - along the Riverwalk and in the Chattahoochee River. They’ve been running, swimming, climbing, shooting, plus doing night navigation, cross fit style workouts, and an obstacle course.

“They are truly the top 1% of the 1% of our Army that epitomizes a more elite soldier who can do things with their hands, minds, weapons, and spirit that our adversaries cannot. Well done, gentlemen,” COL Hammonds added.

Closing out the Lieutenant General David E. Grange Junior Best Ranger Competition, GEN Brito also talked about the namesake of this famous event, calling him a “giant in our profession, indeed a legend in both the Army and the Rangers. And gentlemen, you today are his legacy.”

Congrats to all 112 ranger athletes who competed.