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Up Close, One Best Ranger Event

Twenty-six obstacles. No mercy. The Darby Queen course on the event's final day can make or break Soldiers. See our video to get a glimpse of what's involved.
Captain Robert Killian of the Colorado National Guard, who won the 2016 Best Ranger Competition with Pennsylvania Guard Staff Sergeant Erich Friedlein (not pictured), knows firsthand how taxing the Darby Queen can be. Photo by Nathan Leduc
Captain Robert Killian of the Colorado National Guard, who won the 2016 Best Ranger Competition with Pennsylvania Guard Staff Sergeant Erich Friedlein (not pictured), knows firsthand how taxing the Darby Queen can be. Photo by Nathan Leduc

Only the elite competitors of the Best Ranger Competition truly know what it’s like to endure through the three days of physical and military tests. But to get an inkling of the demands the competition places on Soldiers, all you have to do is take a closer look at just one event: the Darby Queen obstacle course. 

Consisting of 26 tasks that have competitors running, climbing, crawling and more, the Darby Queen is well known as a stage that can make or break Soldiers on the Best Ranger’s final day. Watch our video below to get a taste. Congrats to Colorado National Guard Captain Rob Killian and Pennsylvania National Guard Staff Sergeant Erich Friedlein for surviving the Darby Queen — and becoming the first Guard Soldiers ever to win the Best Ranger Competition.