What makes a good drive coach?

It’s my first year as a drive coach after the previous two being the primary driver on our team. I’d love to hear some advice from those of you who have been coaching for years now.

Your biggest job is to watch everything but your own robot, and feed useful information to your drivers so they can execute on it. Your drivers are absorbed in the operation of the robot itself. Your job is to watch the clock, the referees, the scoreboard, other bots, etc, and then make strategic calls for your drivers.

I haven’t seen much pinning this season yet, but one easy example of good drive coaching that I saw in Stronghold was when my team was playing defense. Our human player (over on the other side of the field) would mirror the counts of any referee who was doing a pinning count on us, and the drive coach would basically yell it into our driver’s ear. We went from losing by fouls (because nobody on the field saw the refs giving us our “warning” with the tomahawk chops) to not getting any for the rest of elims.

Drive coach really should be called traffic control cause you function in a way similar to an air traffic controller. Think of all the information you needed as a driver that involved looking away from the robot. Be the source for that information.


Appreciate all the help everyone

Mike’s too humble to admit he’s really good at it but he gives some pretty good tips in this video

(Don’t know why it’s starting at an hour in. Just rewind it.)

As stated above, drive couch needs to be an extra set of eyes that aren’t worried about controlling the robot.

I try to keep an eye on all the robots during a match, see if we need to change to “plan B”, or just shout encouragement to everyone when things are going well.
If your alliance partner is going off-strategy, you need to ask them why.
If you see your opponent is getting the upper hand, you need to relay that info to everyone.
If your alliance partner is committing fouls, inform them!

NOT having an airship to watch on top of all that other stuff is going to be soooooo nice this year. :smiley:

Our drive coach gets direct “intel” from our scouts who evaluate all partners and competitors singally so there is a scout expert on every team on the field…so they get the best intel possible.

They then can establish a “winning” strategy and fully detect teams that tend to over state thier actual performance traits.

This usually works unless we ourselves are ineffective like in San Diego this year.

So for us its a strong link from scout to “driver strategist” that discusses strategy with our partners in every match

So our drive coach is also the strategist

On the field the execute their own strategy