Bills Blog - Champs info

All the fields are not in the same location

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** The latest on CMP **

Good Afternoon Teams,

The Championship Planning Committee met last night. Its mindboggling how many details there are to running an event like the Championship every year. Now that we’re moving to a new location, after seven years in Atlanta, GA, the committee needs to examine every aspect of the event, ask ‘why do we do this this way?’ and determine ‘what is the best way to do this in St. Louis?’ Not everything is 100% firm yet, but here is the latest information I have on the 2011 *FIRST *Championship.

5-9:30PM – 5 representatives from each FRC team will be allowed into the pits to:

  • Uncrate their robot – robot inspectors will be on hand to check your lock-up form if your last regional was a bag & tag event
  • Work on their robot – the NASA machine shops will be open
  • Get their robot inspected
  • Get their encryption key
    Teams may calibrate their robot sensors on the competition fields 8:00am-8:45am
    Practice matches run 9:00am – noon
    Qualification matches run 1:00-7:00pm YES, MATCHES RUN UNTIL 7PM
    Pits will stay open until 8PM

Opening Ceremonies start at 8:30am. There will be NO ROBOT PARADE.
Qualification matches 9:30am-5:00pm YES, MATCHES ARE SCHEDULED TO END AT 5PM
The FIRST Dean’s List presentation will be held at noon in the Ballroom
Pits and the NASA machine shops will stay open until 7pm

Closing Ceremonies, including the final FRC matches and award presentations are scheduled 4:00pm-6:00

I will be hosting half hour FRC Live sessions at 10:30 & 3:30 on Thursday and at 10:30 on Friday. I’m not ready to announce the topics, but I do want to thank everyone who sent in suggestions.

The floor plan will be VERY DIFFERENT in St. Louis. New this year, two qualification fields will be located in the Dome and two qualification fields will be located in the pits. To ensure all teams get to compete both in the high profile Dome and on the easy access, intimate fields in the pits, divisions will swap fields at noon on Friday. Specifically: if your team starts qualification rounds on Dome field #1 on Thursday, your team will move to Pit field #1 on Friday while the teams who started qualification rounds on Pit field #1 on Thursday, move to Dome field #1 on Friday

Watch this space, and your team’s main and alternate contact’s email inbox for additional updates. I understand from the committee that there will be more details available on April 20th.

22 Days until Championship
See you then!

Not all fields are in the dome, some are in the pits… Wow, the scouts will not be happy about this.

Switching fields?
Man I thought we left that crap back at Disneyworld. I don’t know anyone who missed that nonsense.
If the Jones Dome wasn’t big enough to hold four fields then why in the world did FIRST grant them the contract for three years?
This is looking worse and worse every time I turn around to look again.

What would cause them to do this? Isn’t the football field the same size as ATL? It was perfect in ATL, so why change it for STL?

Seems like a step backwards.

So, now there will be 4 fields in the pits and 3 fields in the dome?

Oh wow. To say STL will be different is an understatement.

Qual matches until 7PM on Thursday is good, Hopefully that means more matches. (More then 10?)

No mention of how Saturday afternoon is going to go per each division. It just mentions final rounds starting at 4:30, we’ll have to stay tuned to see if anything there changes. Possibly no Qualifiication matches on Saturday?

I’m not sure how i’m going to like the “pit” fields versus “Dome” fields. It will be different. The goal here is to have a more “intimate” field set-up in the pits. I wonder why this change was made though, we ran 4 fields in Atlanta for 7 years and sure it wasn’t as intimate but it was awesome seeing all 4 fields going at once. Granted queuing may have been a little hectic at times but when isn’t it? And if we are swapping fields at Noon on Friday does that mean if you start in the pits on Thursday, you get to go to the Dome on Friday at noon and then what happens on Saturday?

Stay tuned for more infro from Bill. This thread is going to be interesting to watch. Mike and I just got a ton of things to talk about on our Show tomorrow night. (

If the pits werent crowded enough as they were!?!

Kind of interesting, but it will be a pain to scout. At least you only have to scout your devision. But still, moving all of the equipment and all will not be too fun.

On the competition side of things, one day you will have an easy walk, and the next day a bit farther.

I was not around for Championships when it was in Disney, but this really does sound like a pain.

Other than that, everything sounds good. I am really glad we get to work for a while on Wednesday. I am sure many teams including us will need this time.

So the divisions are switching fields but are the volunteer staff sticking to their divisions or sticking to their fields cause what I’m concerned with are consistent ref calls in each division.

eek, what a logistics nightmare…:confused:

omg, what’s the team social going to be like?

If it’s anything like the Epcot setup was, “intimate” will mean “impossible to find seating”.

At Disney people were interested to find spots in those tent area because they were shaded instead of watching matches on whatever field they were assigned to back in 2002.
This isn’t quite as extreme but it’ll be interesting to watch teams jostle for position for when they switch fields.

This sounds like a disaster waiting to happen…

Besides the fact that there’s going to be a huge exodus from the pits to the dome and visa versa Friday at noon, what about teams using line followers or cameras? Instead of calibrating for 1 field, they now have to calibrate for two fields in the alloted 45 minutes. Instead of ~86 teams looking for a spot on one field, there are 160+ teams looking for a spot on both fields. Furthermore, how is FIRST planning on transferring tournament data from “Dome Field #1” to “Pit Field #1”? What if a team has issues connecting to one field but not the other? Will teams be allowed to practice on both fields prior to the start of qualifications?

I too am curious how Saturday afternoon will work. Do teams in two divisions get to use their own pit area, while the teams in the other two have to move their pit to the Dome? What happens when the pit divisions move on to Einstein? Do those 6 teams have to hurry up, pack up their pit and make a mad dash to the dome?




The only consolation I see in this is personal: Having only attended CMP once, last year, I’m not used to the Atlanta setup; however, I have to wonder about this. Is the planned setup purely to allow for both an intimate environment in the pits, as well as the awesome, professional-sports-event atmosphere in the dome, or are there some other logistical issues forcing this to be the case?

I assume it’s the former, because I can’t begin to imagine what sort of issues would force FIRST to set up the championship event in this way, but it seems to me that the powers that be would have had enough foresight to realize how greatly inconvenienced teams would be by this plan. In any case, it should be…interesting…at best to see how this all pans out.

I guess I should probably worry about my team qualifying for CMP first, though.

Intimate normally means small and crowded

I wonder if there will even be bleachers or seating in these “intimate” pit fields.
Or will they just be glorified practice fields…

I guess they need more room to put FTC and LEGO LEAGUE in front of everyone in the DOME. Or more room for VIPS or something…

This is, indeed, very disappointing…a logistics nightmare.

I don’t get it… but don’t expect anyone to tell you why…especially BILL

From what I can tell, there has been NO INFORMATION about the “social” or “finale” from FRIST or Steele Meetings other than “we will have one” and all details are “TBA”.

Anyone have any other information?

Will there be one? Will food be available? Anyone know?

-Mr. Van
Coach, Robodox**

What happened to KISS? This is just asking for trouble. If the venue could not accommodate 4 fields, they should’ve picked a different venue.

Aw man! I hope they aren’t kicking two FRC fields to the pits so FLL and FTC can be showcased in the dome. You can’t even see the action from the stands!

Oh man, if the stage is bigger for the “entertainment” side of FIRST…I just don’t know…

or maybe they kicked out two FRC fields cause they couldn’t fit a 4th and make it the “black sheep” field…I wish he posted on why the fields are the pits, it’ll give a little more ease of mind even if it’s still a logistics nightmare.

Is anyone missing Atlanta already?