Practice Day at Colorado Regional

First of all we made it to Denver today.  We only had to wait until 9 am for the gates to open for the interstate.  We made it to the regional sometime after 1 pm.  Roads were interesting.

The robot has passed inspection.  But this did not happen until after 6 pm tonight.  We had some repairs to be made to the robot that weren’t completed earlier, from some damage during the KC regional, but these ended up a longer than expected time for fixing the robot.  We made one practice match, but practiced on the practice field.

Our first match is Friday at 8:58 am. The full match schedule is on  There are also webcasts located on that site too.

We can’t wait to get back to it tomorrow morning.  We had good results with NRLB, having many opportunities to help teams, even lending a compressor at one point.  We helped the California team, 1138, who were delayed, and are in the lab next to us.

Pictures from today will post on Facebook, so be sure to look there as well.







Today, we were bound for the Denver FIRST robotics regional at Denver University’s Ritchie Center.  Forty-eight teams from several states will meet to take on the challenge of this years game, FIRST Stronghold.  Twelve students and ten mentors, along with some parents, were hoping to arrive tonight to set-up our robot pit and to relax at our hotel before tomorrow’s practice day, but the fickle March weather had different plans dumping snow across Denver and the eastern plains.  With the high winds and snow, blizzard conditions led to the closure of Interstate 70 from Denver to the Kansas border.  After several hours of driving, our team was faced with the decision of how to proceed and have chosen to stay the night in Goodland, Kansas, and then proceed to competition in the morning.

We hope to get an early start and arrive in time to load-in the robot and equipment, and to get to work making some last minute repairs and modifications before having time on the practice field.  Snow across the region has affected many FIRST teams and volunteers.  Some teams were stranded waiting at airports, as the Denver airport was closed to all flights.  The regional asked for other volunteers to help with field set-up, as other committed mentors could not reach the venue.  The venue, the Ritchie Center, is located at the University of Denver, who cancelled classes today.  We expect that the regional will proceed normally, with a delay tomorrow as teams make their way in.

We are excited to meet and compete with the FIRST teams from Colorado and other states and hope they all have safe travels.  Many have already competed at other regionals, so the competition should be refined.  We are looking forward to working with other teams, sharing the knowledge, experience, and team spirit that 1108 is known for with the Denver regional.

To keep up with the team, be sure to follow updates on our social media sites (below).  For the Denver regional the events, possible webcast, and results are posted at  On Twitter, look for the #coloradofrc tag or follow the Bionic Tigers’ (Team 1592) twitter list to keep up with the regional.


Kansas City Wrap-up


We, team 1108, had a fantastic time meeting and interacting with other teams at the Greater Kansas City Regional.

We are proud that our robot was selected into the 6th alliance which included The Cyborgs (#1825) and Team Scream (#4522.) Their robots were great in the offensive and we are grateful that we were able to work with them.

Our team is known for our No Robot Left Behind program, and teams that were assisted through this nominated us for the Gracious Professionalism award. Our team recognizes this as an award of high prestige and is extremely appreciative that we were able to earn this award.

It always amazes the team how connected first is. One of our mentors, Gregg R., was very engaged with helping other teams with their robots and providing his own expertise. It just so happens that Saturday, the 12th of march, was his birthday. So at one point during the day all of the teams in the stands sang happy birthday to Gregg. During a meeting after the regional, Gregg mentioned this being a key part in his experience at the Greater Kansas City Regional.

Here are some pictures from last few day, and be sure to look at more pictures and videos on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.


Kansas City – Day One

Today, we had our first taste of regional competition, in preparation of the next to days of the FIRST Greater Kansas City regional.  It is the 10th year and has nearly 60 teams competing at the Metropolitan Community College.

Arriving early, we were impressed by the spirit of Team Driven (#1730) and their welcome tunnel.  We helped cheer on volunteers, judges, and organizers.  Our Robot Panther mascot danced and posed for pictures until doors opened.

We went to work on get the robot readied for inspections, setting up scouting in the stands, setting up NRLB (No robot left behind) stickers and flyers to let teams know how to let us assist them in whatever way to get all robots running, and the other work.  Despite the attention to the robot, all the jobs of vital to the success of our team and the students impressed with their dedication to their individual jobs throughout the day.

We are also proud to have seven team members, and alumni, volunteer during the event.

Many people visited the pit during the day.  Some special guests visited our pit, learning about the robot.  Our driver, Chris P., did an outstanding job of describing the robot to on of these guest, taking her hand from mechanism to mechanism to let her feel the parts of the robot.  These students were visiting from a school for the blind, and were very enthused about robotics.  The questions being asked from one of the girls were very insightful and expressed her great interest.  I expect and hope that she’ll soon be competing in FIRST.

Finally to the robot, which had three practice matches and a few practices on the pit field.  In the first two, there were some mishaps with the arm, but still we won the match.  Not all teams were taking practice, possibly because they were making fixes and being inspected.  Our last match, we defeated three defenses by crossing each twice.  We also scored a couple boulders in the high goal and challenged the tower.  All for a total of about 45 points, and a reasonably competitive score.  We rounded out the day making minor fixes, including a new boulder stopper to keep boulder for getting trapped in the robots center.

Competition continues tomorrow, with more information in the previous post for visiting or viewing online.  A couple photos of the day’s activity are below, and also on Facebook and Twitter below.


Competition Week – Kansas City

This week, the Greater Kansas City Regional, takes place at the MCC Business & Technology Campus (see map and info below).  Panther Robotics will be competing among 60 mostly regional teams with our robot, Sir Launch-A-Lot.  Our robot is capable of driving over the most challenging obstacles, then picking up and launching boulders at our competitor’s castle.  We are looking forward to competing, and hope to scale the castle wall and to score many points in order to compete in the elimination tournament.


Sir Launch-A-Lot 

Our Chairman’s team has been preparing to share our story of how our team has fostered the FIRST mission of inspiring students to technical career and inspiring people to support STEM education in our community and students.  At competition we will meet other students, teams, volunteers, and visiting public, and we get to share not only our robot, but our passion for our team in fun ways with “I LOVE ROBOTS” pins, our scrapbook of pictures of our year, our medieval standard (flag) showing our panthers, pit decorations, costumes, and cheering supplies.  We really  go all out for this three day celebration of ingenuity.  We welcome anybody to come and visit us, especially future FIRSTers, and see our robot in our pit and cheer on all the teams.

Competition Info:

Friday and Saturday (March 11th and 12nd) are best for visitors to watch competitions. The opening ceremony is Friday at 8 am, followed by matches until noon and from 1-6 pm. On Saturday matches continue between 8-12 am. After lunch (1:30 pm), the best teams compete in a elimination tournament. We hope to compete, but only the top 24 teams (out of 60) compete, so if specifically wanting to see one of our matches come earlier, but the finals are the most exciting part. The closing and award ceremony follow, ending at 6 pm.

Address: MCC Business & Technology Campus, 1755 Universal Ave, KC, MO 64210

For those not able to come, you can follow online through a video stream of the regional. These are located at The Blue Alliance, and the Kansas City Regional is at this link: or one the main site: For more information you can visit