Military world championships are held annually in 25 different sports, including shooting. The competitions take place within the framework of CISM, the International Military Sports Council, in which Sweden is one of 132 member countries. CISM competitions around the world always observe the motto "Friendship through sports". This year's World Military Shooting Championships are the 43rd.
The competitions are to be held at Rödberget Shooting Centre, about four kilometres southwest of Boden town centre. Two new shooting ranges have been built and two ranges have been overhauled. The competitors will be accommodated at the garrison's two barrack areas.
Olympic medallists participating
So far, 550 participants from 45 countries have applied. Among them, there are several Olympic competitors arriving direct from Beijing, and some of them belong to the world elite and have won medals in China. In addition, a number of specially invited national and international guests are expected, as well as the national and international media. The inauguration of the Championships, which will take place in Boden's newly built multiarena, Boden Arena, will be led by the Supreme Commander, Håkan Syrén. The inauguration and the shooting competitions will naturally be open to the public.
Two years' preparations
Preparations for the Championships have been going on for over two years and in all, the competitions will be overseen by approximately 250 officials, most of them from civilian shooting associations, but many from Boden Garrison.
The competition organisation has already been put through its paces, when last year the Nordic Military Shooting Championships took place here – the "preliminary World Championships".
"The Nordic Championships gave us an opportunity to rebuild and modernise several of our shooting ranges. For the world championships, we have completed that work by building two new shooting ranges, one 25-metre and one 50-metre. So we have the pleasure to be able to offer modern, well equipped facilities which guarantee fair, first-class competitions. The new shooting ranges combined with our holding the World Championships will also considerably improve conditions for the future shooting training for soldiers in Boden", says the Chair of the Organising Committee, Lieutenant Colonel Sven Mattsson.
Follow the competitions on the Internet
You can read more about the competitions here on the Armed Forces web site, address www.mil.se/wmsc08. Beginning 15 September, it will have a link to a dedicated web site presenting results so that people can follow the competitions direct via the Internet.
The World Championships end on Saturday 20 September with the prize-giving and the closing ceremony in Boden Arena, to which the public are naturally also welcome.