GNR QF4M3 Double Bypass Timeout On-Field Inconsistency?

As a team who doesn’t have to compete this weekend, I was watching the GNR stream and in Quarterfinals 4 Tiebreaker, it was stated by the Head Ref that both alliances has teams that exceeded their timeout off-field and as such wouldn’t be permitted to play in that match. As such, it was a 2v2 match.

The blue box in manual section 11.7.4 states that:

Teams that cause a delay to the start of a MATCH after a TIMEOUT are at risk of being in violation of C7.

Given this though, both alliances teams seemed to be field-side in the queuing area (webcast didn’t give the clearest angle,but it looked like they were ready to go on-field). This does not read as a sufficient delay to me as a stream viewer (we’ve had larger delays for dance parties not wanting to end…) and has been enforced significantly more laxly at other events the same weekend.

Should these two teams have been allowed on field to allow a 3v3 match for the tiebreaker, or did this rule get enforced correctly, indicating that other events this weekend and in past seasons ruled it incorrectly? I’m curious as to what CD thinks.


In no way should we prioritize a one minute delay over the experience of teams at an event. Teams standing in queue are not causing a delay. And if you are going to enforce it strictly, tell the teams you want them on the field then or you will not allow them to play. This head ref has in the past been far more strict on rulings than other head refs, so either they need to be more clear about how they are ruling, or FIRST needs to step in, in order to create consistency of interpretation of rules.


Other events literally gave teams 20+ minute timeouts as they gave out awards between matches.

I’ve always been confused by the strict time restrictions to calling timeouts, backups and returning to the field.


The plot thickens. This was discussed in a Discord I’m present in.



If this is true, I cannot see any argument as to why they weren’t allowed to play.


The fact that they decided to start the match before asking the teams to use a timeout card or call in a backup makes this situation even weirder. At least both alliances were on even ground, but this still should not have happened at all.

I hate to say it, but why has this season been such a trainwreck in terms of these types of calls?


As the drive coach of 5913, I am very disappointed with how it ended but they did what was in the rulebook. Sucks that we lost our 1st pick and they lost their 2nd, but as an alliance if we were more diligent in adhering to the timeout counter, there wouldnt have been a need for this.


It was an unfortunate series of events, but it’s our responsibility to come to the field with time to spare. It will definitely be a good learning experience for the team moving forward. Thank you to all the volunteers that made it a great event!


You can’t use those after a certain time from the clear signal of the previous match. If the field’s timeout timer is up, that certain time is LONG over!

A time out had also been called, this was the end of that timeout.

I’ll echo my alliance partner and teammate above. It was our responsibility to be on the field, and we were late. I hope this can serve as a lesson to others about getting to the field on time.

The volunteers did their jobs as specified per the rules for this season. Their efforts are greatly appreciated, and I’m positive they weren’t happy with how things turned out in that match any more than the teams/audience were. The decisions that were made were correct per what FIRST HQ has instructed.

To the point made above about teams being slowed down on their way to the field… there is some truth to that, but the volunteers were doing their jobs as they were instructed to do, and both teams put themselves in that position.

With all of that said, I think FIRST would do well to add a human element to that rule. Give the head ref some discretion as it relates to how to handle these situations.

As it was, there was a significantly longer delay in figuring out how to handle the situation, and making an announcement about the decision, than there would’ve been by just allowing both teams to enter the field roughly 10 seconds after their alliance partners.

I don’t believe a single person at the event would’ve batted an eye if FIRST allowed for some discretion in these situations, and allowed both teams (who were making a good faith effort to get to the field on time) on the field. All teams on both alliances were incredibly gracious and professional about the entire situation, which was a reminder for why this program is so great.

By allowing volunteers to make common sense decisions, FIRST would be greatly increasing their customer experience.


Why can’t we just be like Ontario

You’ve basically summarized all the issues I’ve ever had with events.

There needs to be something else on that rule (or, ooooh, in the secret rules) that allows the opponent to override a “blocked from the field” decision, especially when the teams not allowed to play are literally just staring at the pathetic 1 v 3 match unfolding from behind the fieldside gate.


Just moves the allowable time for a backup a couple minutes farther along, and blocks a second team timeout. Doesn’t change that there’s a limited time to play those or that that time ends well before the timeout does.

Not a rules expert here, but during the alliance captain meeting today, our head ref emphasized the fact that a universal “wheels on the ground” rule was being enforced this year when it came to time outs and such. He mentioned it was an effort to try to get all events to respond to delays in a consistent manner.

Because of the stricter measures, there were inspectors, queuers, and refs all in the queue attempting to make sure everyone was well aware of the time remaining and hustle through any reinspection.

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