FIRST was an awesome experience for our rookie team (team overview)

Ever since my team and I started building our robot for the Silicon Valley Regional, we were pretty down and discouraged about how well we’d do. We had a guess that we were gonna place at most #30 (out of 46).

Boy, were we wrong. We were a little nervous from our first round (5 points… 5 points ), but after that we pretty much started to skyrocket. From rank 43 to 22 to 34 and eventually all the way to number 10 at the first day, everyone was ecstatic. We all felt like we could do anything we wanted.

This feeling we had came to us even more the next day, where we slowly crept up to rank #8 and staying in that general area for a while. After crapping out on our final round with a final ranking of number 11, we figured it was almost over for us. Once again, we were wrong. After some of the teams combining, we were able to pick a team.

It was a tough choice. So many teams, each with their own strengths and weaknesses. Eventually, we decided on the Nerds of the North (a perfect choice as a partner- they could do what we couldn’t and vice versa) and the Milpitas Extreme Robotics Team as our backup.

The quarterfinals come up and we’re almost ready to go. When our first round begins, we noticed that the Nerds of the North were perfect for us. They could cap and decap where as we could just cap. Sadly, they weren’t able to get on the bar, which set us back a lot. After winning our first quarterfinal by just 5 points, none of us could believe that we were actually in the quarterfinals and winning.

Our backup took our place for the round after that because we were pretty hurt (the problem of having a robot like ours- VERY high maintenance, we could only compete every other round of ours) and watched as our backup crapped out. :confused:

The round after that, we were back in business. It was us and the NotN versus Los Altos High and Chief Delphi (hehehehe…). I can’t remember the score, but we won (no hard feelings, Delphi. :P). With that, our achievements were set even higher- we made it into the semfinals.

After the intense round against Los Altos and Delphi, our robot took a lot of fixing. We sent in our backup for us, and once again things didn’t work out (their bot would’ve been good if their arm worked, but it broke) and we lost. During our 2nd round of the semifinals, we sent out our own robot to try and redeem ourselves. It was working until one of the robots from the opposing team blocked off our way onto the center platform. As we were fighting, our bot tried to back away and the other team flipped us over. We struggled to get up, but it was to no avail until our teammate helped us up. By then, though, it was too late. We ended up losing that round 10 to 20 and were eliminated from the competition.

In the end, we recieved the Highest Rookie Seed award and the General Motors ______ ______ award (someone help fill in the blanks? XD) and ended up in 3rd place.

This experience has been really great for us and we couldn’t imagine it to be any better. We really would have settled for rank #30, and yet we ended up in 3rd place in the end. It’s just so unbelievable. I mean, just the fact that our robot worked would be considered a success in our eyes. We just didn’t think we had enough to make it to the quarterfinals, let alone the semifinals. For our first year, this was a great experience for all of us and we’ll all never forget it.

This is Jonny Hechema in representing team 1351, signing out.

(By the way, in case you were wondering. I was the short kid with a 49ers sweatshirt that had “1351 I5 1337” duct taped on it)

I think its the General Motors Industrial Award.

Great Job You Guys!!! :cool:

Congratulations indeed! It’s great to see a rookie team do so well. Your accomplishments and attitude bode for a great future in FIRST. Keep up the good work!

Congratulations on doing so well as a rookie team.

You indicate that your team had to repair damage between matches in the finals. What were the rules for that? Could any team member/mentor participate in the repair, or were only the four team members wearing “driver” badges allowed to conduct the repair?

Great job as a rookie team!

(You made up for us… ;))

If they were inside the competition area. The curtained off area around the playing field, then only the drive team would be allowed. However if they removed the robot to the pits or just outside the area, then they could have as many as they wanted. Also, parts fabricated outside the area could be handed in to the drive team

814 was looking at you to be our backups…That would have been interesting–an alliance consisting of two rookie teams. (1458 being the other rookies. Oh man, they rock) I think it would have worked out better than being semi-finalists if you catch my drift… =P