Robotics team to compete at World Championship

Will Zhou, Author

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After recently qualifing to compete at the For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology Robotics Competition in St. Louis Missouri, the Palo Alto High School Robotics team is working hard and making adjustments to its robots to prepare for the championships, according to senior project manager Peter Turnbull. Photos by William Zhou.

Wheels are racing and screws are turning as the Palo Alto High School Robotics team is preparing to compete at the For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology Robotics Competition from April 26 to May 1 in St. Louis.

The FRC is the culminating event of the robotics season, according to senior project manager Peter Turnbull.

“I believe over 600 robotics teams will attend,” Turnbull said. “Teams get invited if they win a regional or district event or if they win certain awards at said regionals or districts.”

The Paly robotics team did not win the Central Valley Regional, according to Turnbull.

“CVR was a bit rocky due to several issues with the robot,” Turnbull said. “Most of those problems were actually not in our control because we had a faulty computer. At CVR, we did our best, but did not win the finals as we were up against Team 254 from Bellarmine and Team 1678 from Davis, who are both good teams.”

However, the Paly team still qualified for the FRC through a series of wildcards, according to Turnbull.

“Team 254 is a Hall of Fame team and get to go to Champs every year no matter what so they generated a wildcard spot for Team 1678,” Turnbull said. “Team 1678 was on the alliance that won championships last year, so they already qualified and generated another wildcard spot for Team 167, which had already qualified previously, leading to another wildcard spot, meaning that all of the teams on the finalist alliance, including Paly, were invited to championships.”  

The robotics team is working hard to prepare for the championship competition, according to Turnbull.

“It’s [qualifying for the championships] is really exciting,” Turnbull said. “We have not been in some time and the entire team is working really hard to prepare for the championships. Despite build season being over, we’re still in the lab a lot, making modifications and generally preparing for competition. There’s so much to do.”