After an intensive, nine-week competition season, Mechanical Mayhem piled on a bus with Rookie All-star team Stormgears (5422) from Westford, MA, for the 22-hour road trip to St. Louis for the FIRST Robotics World Championships on April 22-25. This grand event spanned from Wednesday until Saturday and spread over three venues, one of which was the Edward Jones Dome, hosting 600 FRC teams with an estimated 40,000 attendees. These international teams were divided into eight separate divisions with 75 teams per field. Mechanical Mayhem, along with eight other New England teams, competed on the brand new Carson Division, named in honor of Rachel Carson, an American marine biologist. Matched up against the world’s most esteemed robots, Mechanical Mayhem looked forward to a thrilling week of shocking upsets and insane victories.
From Wednesday until Friday, our team competed in ten qualification matches, earning an average score of 173.7 points. During alliance selection on Saturday morning we chose H.Y.P.E. (5254) from Trumansburg, New York; Eagle Robotics (399) from Lancaster, California; and robOTies (5122) from Old Town, Maine, to join our 6th seeded alliance. This alliance accumulated an average score of 191 points, barely missing our chance to compete in semifinals.
During our time in St. Louis, Mechanical Mayhem enjoyed visiting the Innovation Faire, stopping by the Gateway Arch, and viewing the other FIRST competitions during the weekend. On Saturday night, all the FRC teams crowded to one end of the Edward Jones Dome for the finals on the Einstein field, eagerly awaiting the fast-paced matches among the winners of the eight FRC divisions. Our team enthusiastically cheered on the teams as the alliances from the eight divisions duked it out for the world champion title. In the end, Newton’s division, comprised of Robonauts (118) from League City, Texas; Citrus Circuits (1678) from Davis, California; Buchanan Bird Brains (1671) from Clovis, California; and Gryffingear (5012) from Palmdale, California, reigned victorious over Hopper’s alliance.