All eight women competing in the Army's elite Ranger School failed to advance to the course's second phase, officials from Fort Benning, Georgia, said. The women were vying for a chance to make history as the first women to complete the course.
The eight women, and 101 men who also did not advance, did well enough to get a chance to try again. Retrying a phase is what the Army calls "recycling." Only 25 percent of Army Rangers go through the school without some form of recycling.
Of the 380 male Ranger students who started the school, 115 succeeded in advancing to mountain training, officials said.
The Army's Ranger School is a grueling 62-day course designed to replicate the constant stress, lack of food and sleep deprivation of combat. The first phase includes a 12-mile foot march that must be completed in less than three hours while carrying an average load of 35 pounds. The students must also negotiate 20 obstacles stretched over one mile of treacherous terrain.
The women could choose to retry as early as Thursday. If the eight women pass all phases of the course, they will be awarded the Ranger tab but they won't be allowed to serve in the Ranger Regiment because it is still off limits to women.