Predictions Championship 2009: Curie

With Galileo finally breaking through in 2008, Curie is now the only division without a Championship. Curie has only escaped the Einstein semi-finals twice (2003 and 2008). There is both enough top level talent and depth on Curie this year to change that though.
Curie has more regional champions than any other division, and is loaded up with 16 teams from Michigan. These Michigan teams have played he game more than anyone else, but also have more wear and tear on their robots than any other teams. The top level teams will be ready for this, but it could still cost them a match or two if aspects fail at inopportune times.


79, 190, and 236 all have very similar power dumping designs, with curved ball paths and nearly horizontal releases. Krunch reached the finals in Florida and picked up the win at North Star, while Gompei captured Boston but couldn’t escape the semis in Maryland. The Ticks aren’t quite at the same level as the other two, but have a very solid chance at reaching the elimination rounds if they play well. These teams will be dangerous scoring machines, but none are strong enough to carry an alliance past the quarters alone.

Truck Town Thunder is one of the most dangerous scoring machines in 2009. 68 has the ability to score huge dumps that can swing the fortunes of matches dramatically. They gave the #1 alliance a run for their money in the quarters at MSC, and had two finals appearances (including one win) earlier in the season. They’re most dangerous when they’re the #2 option on their alliance, so they’ll need a very strong partner with them if they want a deep run this year.

399 was twice the #1 captain this season, and managed to convert that into a gold medal in Colorado. Their tremendous 21-3-1 record will be put to the test with much stiffer competition in Atlanta though. Eagle Robotics has a very quick, simple, and consistent machine that can put up the points. It’s hard to say if they have the extra “umph” to push them past some of the top level teams in Curie though.

1771 has a lightning fast shooter, but (like almost all shooters) they’re on effective at close range. They’re not the greatest at overcoming defense, so they’ll likely need another top scoring bot aligned with them to take the pressure off. They should be selected earlier than they were last year (9th) and they have a solid shot at escaping the quarter-finals this time.

Buzz hasn’t been the top selection at either regional they attended this season, but they did make the finals both times (and won BAE). 175 was significantly better in UTC (partially due to the addition of a fan), despite losing in the finals, and if they can continue at that level of play they will be a major factor on Curie. Expect 175 to be a middle of the first round selection.

2039 reached the finals at both of their events, including a highly competitive Chicago regional. They removed their turret and became even better in Milwaukee, improving their result and picking up gold as the #1 seed. They’re a very effective power dumper, and while they might not have quite the upside of a few other teams, they should be very competitive. Expect them to join the 6th, 7th, or 8th alliance.

Skunkworks were the #1 selection at both regionals they attended, but had opposite results. 1983 took home gold in Oregon, but faced an 0-2 exit in the Seattle quarters. They’re a solid scoring machine, but their highly effective swerve drive is what sets them apart from most other teams. They’re the perfect component for a strong 1-2-3 punch from a low seeded alliance, and could have a run deep past noon on Saturday if they get the correct partners.

Blizzard has the best robot in their history, and a victory in FLR to show for it. 188 lost in a dramatic clash in the finals at GTR, but they are poised for a strong event in Atlanta. Their smaller capacity will hurt them against a few of the top teams, but their smart play, quick and accurate scoring, solid driving, and ability to utilize super cells all give them legs up on most teams. Blizzard will be a top 4 selection, and it would be shocking to see them not escape at least the first round.

254 has won more regional events than any other team in FIRST history, and added another to their impressive list this year when they won SVR. The Poofs have never won a Championship though, haven’t been on Einstein since 2005, and lost before the regional finals for only the third time in team history in Vegas. They have a dumper with a huge capacity that can swing the outcome of match with a single scoring opportunity. Their presence on the field forces the other team to defend and gameplan around them, regardless of the other five robots.

No team has been as successful at Championship in the past four years as 217. They have three appearances on Einstein since 2005, and two of those have resulted in wins. The Thunderchickens have won three straight events in 2009, the last two as the #1 seed. Only HOT has more event or match wins this season. 217 scores well, plays smart, and will be one of the elite teams in Curie. They were tested at MSC, and they’ve faced almost every different type of defense and strategy that has yet been create for Lunacy. Their experience (both in Lunacy and in reaching Einstein) will likely be their biggest weapon.

Now that we have new tracking software we canshot with 99.9%acurracy up to 5 feet away our acurracy starts droping off past 5 feet but is still really good

2039 actually changed the Thursday of the Midwest Regional, not at Milwaukee as you imply. Couldn’t agree more about 2039 though, they have great drivers and can score plenty of moonrocks.

#1 Captain in Colorado, #1 selection in Los Angeles. But thank you, we’ll see how we do…

It all depends on the teamwork of the alliance… Alll on the alliance.

Eliminations will be fun!! =p

Thanks! We really appreciate the props. Just to be mentioned with all of these awesome teams is an honor.

I spent two years as a driver of 706 in high school, and this is my 3rd year as the team coordinator for 2039 (my first trip to the championship). Needless to say I’ve been super excited for the last month!

We have a couple of upgrades to implement and are excited to see how they work out. I’m looking forward to having a blast for the next 5 days. Good luck to all of the teams… let’s all work to get Curie that big win! See you all on Thursday!

Chairman’s Award winner will come from Curie.
That’s my only prediction for this year
-Let’s see how that turns out.

I would add 2815 to the sleeper list. This is a quality rookie team that had a strong showing at both of their previous regionals first with a semi final finish and then a finalists position, they are poised and due for some success. And have built a solid dependable robot that can withstand elims.

The scheduling algorithm will be a huge factor here. Last year, the teams were heavily clumped by team number, Only three time did we see a team with a number less than 1,000. Since the power teams this year all seem to be low numbered teams, they might be knocking each other off, while the higher number teams work on each other. A good high numbered team might end up as the #1 seed simply because the low numbered teams beat each other up.

The problem with clumping has been solved. See the end of this thread:

Does anybody know what format the team list file need to be in for the matchmaker program?

text file, single team per line works for me. I’ve attached one for Curie.

curie.txt (474 Bytes)

curie.txt (474 Bytes)