The Army’s state-of-the-art Jackal armoured reconnaissance vehicles are currently being rolled out on Exercise Wessex Storm, taking place on Salisbury Plain Training area in Wiltshire.
The Royal Scots Dragoon Guards (SCOTS DG), who have just moved back to the UK after 40 years in Germany, equipped with Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank, are changing roles to Light Cavalry.
In swapping their Challengers for the Jackal, they have undergone over nine months of intensive driver, weapon and reconnaissance training on the Jackal, which culminates in the current two-week exercise on the plain, in which they will be validated and confirmed in their new role.
The Scots Dragoon Guards are joined by paired Army Reserve Regiment, The Scottish and North Irish Yeomanry (SNIY), for the Exercise. The SNIY, also a Light Cavalry Regiment, are equipped with WMIK (Weapons Mounted Installation Kit), a stripped-back, reinforced Land Rover which carries out similar tasks to the Jackal.
The Commanding Officer of the SNIY Lieutenant Colonel James Campbell-Barnard said: “We have a very close relationship with the SCOTS DG – quite a few of our number have served in the regulars with the SCOTS DG, we share permanent staff instructors and we operate together very often. It has worked really well and my soldiers have learned a lot.”
The Jackal could not be more different from the Challenger 2 for SCOTS DG to master. It is a deep battle space reconnaissance rapid assault and fire vehicle, which is used for roles in which mobility, robustness, and endurance speed and manoeuvrability are essential. It has been used in Afghanistan in some limited roles but is now being rolled out to be the main vehicle to equip the British Army’s Light Cavalry Regiment.