NEforecast: Northern CT Event, February 28 - March 1, 2020
Which is your favorite of this week’s Top Teams?
With every new year of FRC comes new events, and the newest event added to the New England event lineup is none other than the Northern CT District Event! Located at The Woodstock Academy in Woodstock, CT, this event quickly packed to the brim with quality teams looking to set the tone for the rest of the season here in New England. An interesting twist is that many of Connecticut’s most recognizable teams - such as 176, 177, 195, 230, 558, and more - have chosen to sit this one out and expand their build seasons further. Many great Connecticut teams did decide to strike early though, and with plenty of teams from around New England and the Mid-Atlantic coming to stack this event, we have no doubt that Northern CT will be an excellent example of how competitive Infinite Recharge can be.
With only a small number of our Top Teams and Honorable Mentions opting to design with the ability to go under the Control Panel, we’ll be interested to see how alliances comprised of all tall robots strategize and whether a robot’s ability to fully utilize the trench run will make them move up an alliance captain’s pick list. We’ll also be eagerly watching how New England defense develops throughout the event - we’re known for being rough and aggressive, but with penalties abound so far in 2020, we’re hoping that we don’t decide many matches based on tech fouls.
That’s all we’ve got for you this week, folks, so we hope you enjoy. We love to hear your feedback and thoughts, and we’ll be back around the same time next week for another round of forecasting! Good luck and see you at the competition!
78, Air Strike: If you needed to pick the New England team most likely to crush their first event, Team 78 would be your best bet. AIR Strike is known for dominating right out of the gate, and as the winners of all 3 of their district events last year, it should come as no surprise that they’re our top team for Northern CT. Choosing to stay tall and focus on accurate outer and inner port scoring, AIR Strike is rolling out with an actuated 4-roller intake that feeds into a belt-driven channel and snappy turret. Their ability to make shots from all over the trench will allow them plenty of opportunities to shoot unhindered and could easily grab them the top spot this weekend.
6328, Mechanical Advantage: If you’ve spent any amount of time on Chief Delphi over the past two months, you’ve no doubt noticed this team’s stellar open build thread. For those who haven’t, Mechanical Advantage will be rocking a 6-wheel drive, an over-the-bumper intake that goes into a funneling feeder system before reaching their stationary hooded shooter, as well as a dual hook climber. Team 6328 also has the unique characteristic of being the only short bot in our Top Teams list, allowing them to utilize the entire trench for their cycles. If utilized well, this could not only help their cycle efficiency, but also make their qualification & elimination alliances attack from a wide variety of areas, giving them the ‘advantage’ they need to seed high and run away with this event.
2370, IBOTS: Last year’s UNH District Event champions seem to be in good form coming into Week 1. Choosing to keep it simple and stay tall, Team 2370 is also sporting a beefy 8-wheel drive, fixed shooter fed by belts, rotating over-the-bumper intake, and a dual hook climber. They’ll be tackling all aspects of the Infinite Recharge challenge and The IBOTS are no stranger to starting off strong - last year at their first event (Week 4) they managed to be the 2nd overall pick and finished as semi-finalists in a very close tiebreaker match. With even less time to prepare, however, we hope to see them up to their usual standards and score deep into eliminations.
166, Chop Shop: Team 166 has been on a steady upward trend over the past few years and we think their latest creation could be their strongest competitor since 2016. Featuring an over-the-bumper 3-roller intake, a stationary hooded flywheel shooter that’s fed by a channel of belts, and a rugged single hook climber, Chop Shop seems geared up to start this season off strong with a simple and robust robot. Though going tall limits the routes they can take for cycling, they have the effective strategy and smart driving that could be the push they need to be one of the top cyclers at this event, and maybe even secure their first event win ever.
2590, Nemesis: A new challenger approaches! We don’t often get to write about our friends from out of New England, but one of FMA’s perennial powerhouses is making the trek north to start off their season. We haven’t been able to scrounge a whole lot of information about this robot (hey, we’re here for New England!) and while this event won’t count for district points for Nemesis, we’re sure they’re going to play hard and perform extremely well in the elimination matches.
1153, The Revolution: They didn’t get a ton of hype at Week 0, but we were pretty impressed by the simplicity and effectiveness of their robot. A wide intake and big power cell hopper fed into their stationary shooter, and when it came to scoring in the outer port, it just worked. With two weeks since their last performance to work out the remaining issues with their hopper/feeder system and plenty of time to practice, Team 1153 is going to hit the ground running and be an extremely consistent scoring machine.
190, Gompei and the H.E.R.D.: This group of gong-loving goats had a nice return to form with an extremely strong 2019 season that saw them as a top 8 seed at all four of their district events. Gompei and the H.E.R.D. will be hoping to carry this success into Northern CT and earn their first blue banner since 2014, so don’t be surprised if they quickly turn out to be one of the stronger competitors of the weekend.
2067, Apple Pi: Since 2014, Apple Pi has chosen not to do swerve exactly two times, in 2016 and now again in 2020. Going for an 8-wheel drive, a belt feeder that leads into a turret, and choosing to stay low, Team 2067 looks poised to make a strong showing this weekend. Their short stature will also set them apart from the crowd and will certainly add to their value when a top-seeded alliance captain is thinking about what lanes they want to run during the elimination rounds.
2170, Titanium Tomahawks: This big robot is going to be one of the best short-game robots of the Northern CT event. A wide over-the-bumper intake feeds into a simple but very effective carousel magazine, and when they plop down in the target zone, it looks like they’ll be able to put a large percentage of their shots into the inner port. They can climb, drive smoothly, and intake balls easily, so expect to see 2170 become one of the breakout stars of this Week One event.
2877, Ligerbots: Team 2877’s Infinite Recharge robot is short, wide, and potent. A 6 wheel WCD featuring an over-the-bumper intake, carousel/spindexer storage system and fixed shooter hood come together to make an appealing machine. In typical Ligerbots fashion, orange 3D printed parts are abundant, so you’ll be able to identify this robot from anywhere on the field. If everything works as nicely as it looks, this team will be quite the competitor at Northern CT.
Special Rookie Shoutout to Team 8013, Boston Lions!