Dec. 14th, 2010

theturtlemoves: Me in the virgin games at the Rocky Horror stage show in 2009 (Default)
Hello everybody,

The pictures and video I took of Gareth competing in the VEX 2010 Season Opener event in Richmond BC are up!

You can find the pictures here: VEX 2010 Season Opener

And the videos are here: Adrian's Youtube

On the day of the event, Karen drove everybody out to the event for the 8:30am start so Gareth and his team could set up and get ready for the 10am competition start.

Early morning aside, it was a great day for everybody. Gareth engaged with other robotics students to talk robots, strategies and compare creations. The main event was well-run and about as organized as one could expect of a school program. Karen, Julie, Mister, Jael, Amy and myself were all on-hand to watch as the competition began and the 44 (!!!) competing teams got to work scoring points by planting plastic donuts onto various scoring posts around each arena, or by hoisting a robot up the central ladder structure.

Gareth's team was 'Gladstone Greased Lightning' for this event (although that will be changing later) and their robot was built to pick up and deposit donuts with a front forklift and gripping gears to pull the donuts onto, or push them off of, the lift. This gave them a great ability to score points, and to de-score other teams by pulling their rings off the scoring posts. It was a solid design with a few other robots doing the same thing - including the one built by the team that lead the scoring into the finals!

Winning the first round was a great start to the day, but technical issues cropped up and lead to a final score of 2 wins and 4 losses with 56 points heading into the finals - 26th place. In every round where their robot wasn't hampered by a glitch, they did fantastically. And, even in the rounds with technical difficulties, the announcer commended them on continuing to do their best despite the problems.

The finals consisted of eight three-robot teams and Gladstone Greased Lightning was picked to join one of them - putting them into the finals in both of their first two competitions! They won their first round with a spectacular set of blocking/scoring moves from Gareth, the team driver, that put them into the semi-finals. A technical problem in the second round caused problems but they still won by a hair, only to lose in a tie-breaker that ended their run in the semi-finals.

After they were eliminated, Gareth stuck around to root for his fellow Gladstone students in the finals until the event wrapped up around 4pm.

A spectacular day on many, many levels. The pictures and video really don't do it justice.

As a final note, all Gareth wants for Christmas is money for VEX parts so he can build his own creations. ;o)

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theturtlemoves: Me in the virgin games at the Rocky Horror stage show in 2009 (Default)
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