This past weekend, Team 4001 attended Festival de Robotique in Montreal, Quebec.
On Wednesday afternoon, we packed up all our paraphernalia and headed onto the road. We were headed to Montreal to compete in our second regional competition of the year. All the students and teachers were very excited to be on our way to our next competition, so the bus ride there was full of students eating snacks, doing homework, listening to music, and overall just enjoying the company of one another. We arrived in Montreal later that evening, and relaxed before getting ready for bed since the grade 10's had OSSLT in the morning, and the rest of the team had practice matches.
The team had an early start in order to get the pit ready, as well as the robot. The grade 10's on the team however, headed off to do their OSSLT. During practice rounds, we decided to make some improvements on the robot that didn't go too well. One problem after another occurred, so we decided to keep the changes that worked, and change what didn't work back to its original setting. We had an incident where one of our battery's started smoking which gave us all a scare. After lunch, the grade 10's joined the team at Stade Uniprix to observe and enjoy the practice rounds. After a long day for the team, we went back to the hotel to discuss the plans for qualification rounds.
After a hurried breakfast, the team got on the bus so we could get to the competition early and set up. After a quick safety meeting, the drive team and pit crew went off to the pits to get ready for our first match, while the rest of the team took their place in the stands. A short scouting meeting took place in the stands while we waited for the opening ceremony to begin. Since this was our first time at this regional, we didn't know what to expect for the opening ceremony because each regional competition brings something special. It was a very interesting and engaging opening ceremony, getting all the teams pumped and ready to go for the qualification matches. Founder Dean Kamen was also there which was very exciting!
The qualifications started, and throughout the day we kept improving. We all practiced our French while we talked to other teams. We enjoyed meeting new teams throughout the day while slowly moving up in the rankings. In every game that we played, we tried to improve one thing. Whether it was scaling faster, breaching more defenses, scoring more goals, or capturing the tower with other teams. We had a good first day, and we were excited to move up in the rankings the next day and improve upon our scores. When we got back to the hotel, we were all tired, but we ended up staying in a scouting meeting for about 2.5 hours. We had a plan, and we were determined to carry out.
We had an early morning start, since we had to all pack our bags onto the bus. We ended up doing our safety meeting on the bus in order to save some time, so that when we went inside, we would be more efficient. As soon as we got inside, the drive team and pit crew went off to the pits once again, while the rest of the team went to claim our seats in the stands. After another wonderful opening ceremony, we began the remaining qualification rounds. When qualification rounds concluded, we were sitting in 10th place. Alliance selection was shortly after, which didn't give us a lot of time to discuss our ranking.
After alliance selection, we were chosen by our alliance captain Team 3544, and joined Team 2626 as alliance 5. We were excited to be working with some awesome teams, and we all had the drive to win. Qualifications went well, although we had to play a third match as a tiebreaker. We ended up moving on to the semifinals, where we were beaten by the first place alliance, Team 5618, Team 3990, and Team 3533. It was a heated battle, where our alliance did not give up. We had won the first match, which had given us hope, but they had won the second, meaning we had to play another tiebreaker. The first place alliance were able to just edge us out. They ended up becoming Regional Champions, which we would like to congratulate them on. We had an amazing alliance, and we ended up playing some great matches.
During the award ceremony, we were so happy for all the teams that won an award, and we would like to not only congratulate them, but to also congratulate all the other teams on doing so well, and showing so much gracious professionalism throughout the duration of the competition. We didn't go home empty handed though; we walked away with a very prestigious award, that we are all very proud of, the Engineering Inspiration Award. We are so thankful for receiving it. This award qualified us for Worlds, but since we had already qualified by winning the Greater Toronto Central Regional earlier this month, our spot was given to the second alliance captain, Team 3360. Congratulations!
We headed home after a long weekend, and got back to our school around 1:30 am. We were all happy with our accomplishments from this competition, and couldn't wait to tell the school. That had to wait since it was 1:30 am on a Sunday morning, and no one was at school.
We are so excited to be going to Worlds in less than a month now, and we couldn't be more thankful for being able to travel there once again. This was a great season for us, which is not over just yet!