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    Ballard High School Robotics Team Wins World Championship
    Posted on 05/17/2017
    Members of the Ballard Robotics Team celebrate their win!

    World Robotics Champs!

    Ballard High School's robotics team recently laid claim to a first-place win in the Robotics World Championship in Houston, TX. To win, 27 Viking Robotics Club teammates, including freshman, sophomores, juniors, and seniors faced nearly 400 teams from more than two dozen countries, putting a robot they built in just six weeks through various scenarios that called for teamwork, concentration, and MAD robot driving skills. In the end, their team returned home to Seattle, winners of the 26th annual FIRST Robotics Competition.

    The competition is the culmination of a six-week project, in which teams were tasked with designing and building robots capable of operating on their own and with a driver. The robots were also required to be able to climb a rope, travel as fast as 13 miles per hour, and shoot and retrieve whiffle balls and rubber gears.

    The Viking Robotics team was part of a four-team alliance that advanced through several rounds beating other combined teams. In the final round of the competition, the Vikings Robotics senior, Morgan Thompson, drove their robot to fuel a makeshift spacecraft with whiffle balls and gears it needed for takeoff.

    "Before a match I get butterflies in my stomach, but once it starts it's kind of this weird, kind of numb sensation where you're so focused you don't notice anything around you," explained robotics team Senior, Morgan Thompson. "Then all of the sudden the match is over... and you win."

    The Viking Robotics club work on their robot and practice their robot skills after school with the help and advice of several parent volunteers and their advisor, Ballard teacher Brian Connolly. Funding for their robot and travel to competitions comes from outside grants and student fundraising.

     

    Here is the full video of the final match in this year's World Championship.