Was Brit Sniper Lucky or Good?
By Harold Hutchison
From the July, 2014 issue of SOF
Snipers usually live by the motto “one shot, one kill,” but a British sniper in Afghanistan went five better than that this past December. The incident is among the latest notable sniper incidents from the War on Terror.
According to a report by the London Telegraph, an unidentified lance corporal with the Coldstream Guards of the British Army made the shot. Fired from a distance of just under 950 yards, the 20-year-old’s shot hit the trigger for 44 pounds of explosives packed into a vest. The vest detonated, killing the targeted Taliban and five others. A second vest was recovered on the scene.
A number of notable sniper shots have been made during the War on Terror, including several cases where the record for the longest sniper kill shot has been eclipsed. According to a 2012 report by the Daily Telegraph of Australia, one of two unidentified Australian troops with the 2nd Commando Regiment scored a kill using a Barrett M82A1 firing from 3,079 yards. Historically, 10 sniper kills have been made from 2,000 yards or more.
The sextuple-kill shot was not the first notable shot the unidentified Coldstream Guards sniper had made during his tour. His first shot took out a Taliban insurgent from 1,465 yards away. The sniper reportedly used the L115A3 gun, the same sort of rifle used by Corporal of Horse Chris Harrison, who was serving with the Household Cavalry, in November 2009 to set the then-record long sniper kill of 2,707 yards. Prior to the War on Terror, Carlos Hathcock held the record for the longest sniper kill at 2,500 yards.
The L115A3 gun fires the .338 Lapua round and comes with a five-round magazine.