July 12, 2013:
In its continuing efforts to improve the capabilities of its armed forces, Russia has introduced a competition based on actual tasks a tank crew would be called on to perform in combat. The training course is ten kilometers long and each time a tank goes through it they are called on to halt when a target appears and fire one of their three weapons (main gun, machine-gun, or long range missile fired from the main gun barrel). The fourth event is an obstacle course where crews are graded on time and accuracy (not hitting certain obstacles). The crews are ranked according to their scores and those that do the best are rewarded in one way or another.
Such competitions are costly, especially when they involve all similar units in the army, navy, or air force. But in the West such competitions were found to be worth the additional cost and effort. They are a big boost to morale as well because of the competitive element, and this is especially true for the teams (and the unit they are from) who win overall. Russia has picked up on this and has made these elaborate and expensive training/testing methods part of their military reforms.