IRI thanks and reflections from 2826

2826 had a great time at IRI this year, but it was way more than about the win. We made some fantastic new friends, have some great stories and played with and against some of the best in the world. It doesnt get any better than that.

When we dropped into 5th seed, we knew that we would have a long road ahead of us and incredibly difficult task to be able to even get as far as the finals. Way before the alliance picks we had a strong gut feel that 1114 and 4334 were our team. As Paul Copioli said when he introduced us: “If you can’t beat 'em, join 'em”

It was such a pleasure to finally get to work with HoF 1114. They had the perfect combination of speed, scoring and bridging, and all this with brand new drivers at IRI. It went way beyond the robot and drive team. Karthik and Kyle had such an innate sense of how things can play out, see things that might be and plan effectively around the shortcomings. It was an honor to be a part of your process.

4334 has been offered a lot of praise since they made it to Einstein and in my opinion deserve every bit of it. It has been said that they designed to one function and they simply did that well. I agree, but they did another amazing piece of work in SF1-2 playing some phenomenal physical D against 148. Not only did ATA push them back across the bridge, but halfway across the Red side of the field. It was one of my personal favorite moments of IRI.

  1. Thanks for your patience and helpful inputs. Even though you didn’t get a chance to play, you were always there with a helping hand.

I also couldn’t be more proud of our pit crew. 16, 330 and even our own driver beat the snot out of our intake, necessitating a full replacement each time. Our pit crew had us up and running without us having to use our timeout card. Just awesome.

Again, my favorite part was seeing our old friends on 67, 2194, 48, 71, 111, 1732 and 1714 and making some great new friends in teams 33, 973, 2337, 1114, 2056, 245 and 4334. To be part of a community with such talent and dedication is something that you just don’t get anywhere else.

Finally, thanks to Andy, Chris and teams 234, 45 and 1024 for putting on a great show. After 3 years attending IRI, it keeps getting better.

Best IRI yet, and it just keeps geeting better every year.
This was probably the most competitive FRC event ever held.
Simply phenomenal. Hands down my favorite event of the year.

Only at the IRI can you look at the list of 8 alliances and have no idea who is going to win because they are all so stacked.
Only at the IRI are the finals a face off between alliance 5 and alliance 6.
Only at the IRI do you see 100+ score matches decided by a single point.

Thanks to Andy Baker, Chris Fultz and everyone else who makes this event possible.

Thanks to our partners 1023, 51 and 330. Great strategy and execution. We worked very well together and we came very close to winning it all. Second place at the IRI is certainly something to be proud of.

Congrats to the winners 2826, 1114, 4334 and 245. It was simply amazing to watch you guys in action. Well deserved!

Can’t wait for next year.

Not to mention that it was a perfect tie before 3 human player shots were made!!! And within 10 seconds too!

That moment and the high scoring match where 118 scored from the bridge were my personal favorites of the entire competition.

Congratulations 2826, your team was amazing and thank you for giving me a tour of your robot on Thursday night, it was a very solid robot.

One other interesting reflection from IRI…

Over the weekend, I looked up at the banners several times and dreamed of 2826 being up there. Then I noticed that 2056 as winners in 2007 were the highest numbered team and my aspirations increased. When we finished, my reaction was that it will be awesome to to have that honor as the highest number team… And then it sunk in that 4334 has probably ruined that dream for other teams for years to come…

In all honesty, it is fantastic that they will be forever up on the IRI wall. There was such a big number and time gap between us and 2056, and ATA just blew that out of the water.

Congrats on the win guys!

Huge props to 4334 for the incredible aggressive defense they played. Very smart plays made by the entire alliance.

Tons of fun to watch this IRI, hope to be there in person next time.

Team 1023 had a great time at our first IRI event. We want to thank Chris, Andy, and everyone that organized and volunteered at the event. It ran so smoothly.

To 33… Thanks so much for joining us, helping out with strategy and such, having such an awesome and unique hybrid mode, and just for being a great team to work with.

To 51… BX ALWAYS loves to play with you. You all did a great job. The triples with you and 33 were so easy and fun! You contributed so much to our wins. Thank you!

To 330… It was nice to make some new friends. Thanks for hanging out with us, and coming in for a very close match. We look forward to seeing you again soon.

Congrats to 2826, 1114, 245, and 4334! Making it to the finals and playing against you was very exciting.

Thanks to everyone for making our first trip to IRI an exciting one!

IRI was an amazing experience for Team 1114. We were overwhelmed by the amount of teams who came up to us to congratulate us on our 2012 Chairman’s Award. The comments and the stories we heard will keep us smiling for years to come.

We knew we’d have a tough road on the field at IRI, as we were using this event to train a new driveteam. It was clear that they were improving as the event went along, but we really had no idea what to expect during Alliance Selection. We were actually a bit startled when 2826 approached us. We thought they would go after a team who was a bit more consistent throughout the weekend. Once we knew Wave was picking us, there was only one thing that went through our heads “We need 4334”. Once again, like on Archimedes, we nervously held our breath as each pick took place. We were both stunned and ecstatic when they slipped to our alliance. Grabbing 245 on the back end was a pleasant surprise, as we knew they’d be a great complement to the alliance if we needed them. From there, things just began to click. It was amazing so see are teams work together as a cohesive unit, in matches against some of the best teams in FIRST. It was also crazy to see how our new drive team responded to the pressure and kept getting better, to a point where their inexperience wasn’t even noticeable.

There’s no doubt in my mind that 2826 is the most underrated team in FIRST. Two regional wins, two regional finalists and two division finalists at champs in the past two years, to go along with their IRI win. Yet, somehow they don’t get mentioned with many of the elite teams in FIRST. I’m pretty sure this is going change very soon. These guys are on the cusp of greatness and it’s just a matter of time until they hit Einstein. Their robot was an absolute monster in the open field; in fact, aside from 1717, I don’t think there was a better open field scorer than 2826. To make sure no one is confused here, these guys were the workhorse on the alliance, absolutely dominating the offensive zone. Not to mention that they’re team is a well oiled machine, with a great group of strategists. It was a pleasure working with Jake, Tyler and everyone else. Thank you for taking a chance on us, and letting us prove that we were ready for the challenge.

Team 4334, our “Eh Team” partners, once again proved that they had the best complementary robot in FIRST. With these guys on the field, any two partners would have a shot at triple balancing. Not to mention their ball stealing and tenacious defense. They’re just a joy to work with, always willing to fill whichever role is needed by the alliance. The turning point of the elimination rounds was their stand off victory against 148 on the co-op bridge.

We can’t forget 245. Even though they were never called into action, they were always ready to act, and very helpful when it came to strategy. It was great knowing that if any one of our robots broke down, we still had a triple balance and two ball auto mode in our back pocket.

To continue on the thought started by Jim earlier in this thread, I’m continually astonished by the pedigree of teams you see in the IRI elimination rounds. In the quarters there were 3 Hall of Fame teams and 8 World Championships, along with 4 2012 Archimedes Finalists. In the semis, we ended up playing against an alliance that won 10 regionals/districts/divisions. It was bordering on ridiculous.

Those semis were especially meaningful for us, playing against three of the teams we respect the most in all of FIRST. 341 who I thought had the best overall performing robot at IRI, 2056 the team who we have such a magical shared history with, and 148 our BFF’s from Texas. It was great seeing the entire Eh-Team on the field together. (Definitely not excluding 2168 here, these guys are another up and coming team, who was severely underrated this year.) Going into this matchup, we knew we’d have to execute perfectly plus have some luck to pull out the win. That’s exactly what happened. Just a stupendous matchup.

Congrats to the finalist alliance of 1023, 33, 51 and 330. These guys had some dogfights to advance to the finals from the 6 spot, and kept things as close as possible.

Thanks to everyone who helped put this event together, especially Chris and Andy. IRI never ceases to amaze.

I know not only myself but our entire team had an amazing time at IRI. Only two years ago all of this would have been a dream. Sure we had our downs this year but all the ups we had made them insignificant. Each competition and experience strengthened the bond between our team and I am sad to see it all end.

Although, this is only my second year in FIRST, I feel that one of the biggest lessons that it imparted on me, is “that it is not always about winning but taking all that you can from each experience and using it to not only be inspired but inspire those around you”.

Although, he’ll probably be mad at me later for doing this, I’d like to call attention to our Drive Team Captain who has been our operator for the past two seasons. Every match, he played whether it was qualifications or eliminations you could easily see that he put everything he had into each match that he played. As cliche as it may sound he put wore his heart on his sleeve each time he stepped behind the driver station’s glass.

Like 10 other seniors, this was his last competition as a student and as also as our operator. Although, we were plagued with mechanical problems throughout most of IRI, he never gave up his fight to make it to eliminations. Although the third round of the semifinals would be unknowingly his final match, the happiness he displayed was truly inspiring.

If there was any better way to end a student driver’s career it would be driving with the two teams they looked up to the most. Although, many teams had inspired him, Miss Daisy and OP Robotics were the two teams he spoke of the most.

Quoted best by him, “Never in my wildest dream, I imagined running along side 3 of the best robots on the planet. It was absolutely surreal. All you Aluminum Falcons, it has been nothing, but pleasure watching us grow as a team. Fighting through those tough times with those stupid perverted jokes! You are the best group of people anyone can ask for in a team. Thank You for an amazing senior year. You guys will be missed”.

I am so glad that I joined FIRST and have to finally admit that I’m hooked:eek: . FIRST has changed my life in many ways, for the better. I am happy that IRI was the experience that marks an end to my FRC student career.

I would like to thank the IRI planning committee for organizing such an amazing event and 341, 2056, and 148 for selecting us for their phenomenal alliance. Also congratulations to 2826, 1114, 4334, and 245 you guys were well-oiled machine and displayed what “consistent deadliness” that could be brought by an effective alliance.

I know this post was long, but thank you most importantly 2168 for making my Junior and Senior Year the most memorable time. I possibly could have had. I will deeply miss all of you.

I completely agree with your comments about 2826. 973 Watched every champs elim video going into IRI for scouting, and it was clear no one was better at pointing and shooting with speed and accuracy than 2826.

Some teams are great at design, some are great at getting the maximum performance from their vehicles (through superior driving and strategy). I believe 2826 has both. They clearly perform well on the field with thoroughly planned and executed strategy. Off the field, through discussions with them, they really love the detailed design and know their stuff and are excellent at tailoring their design to match the fabrication and personnel resources available to them. It was a pleasure comparing some notes with them at IRI.