St. Robert's Ram Robotics Team 4001 wins Greater Toronto Central Regional FIRST Robotics Competition

Congratulations to St. Robert's Ram Robotics Team 4001 on its alliance win at the Greater Toronto Central Regional FIRST Robotics Competition. The regional competition, which featured 41 teams, took place March 2- 5, 2016, at Ryerson University and was sponsored by Scotiabank.

The win was made even sweeter by the adversity Team 4001 fought through. After the first round, it finished fourth out of 41 teams and was selected by the number one seeded Team Dave 3683 from Waterloo to join its alliance. However, St. Robert's robot was severely damaged from the first quarterfinal game and due to the extensive damage the Ram Robotics Team 4001 had to miss a match to be repaired. This forced its alliance members, Team Dave 3683 and the Irish Iron Team 5039 from Sarnia to play a match with only their two robots against an alliance of three robots.

It was 'all hands on deck' as Team 4001's build and electronics team, along with Teacher Bob Chirrey and Peter Martin of Quanser Inc., worked to diagnose and then repair the problems from the damages.  Amazingly, Team 3683 and 5039 managed to win their match, and Team 4001's robot was repaired in time to compete in the semifinals.

Without a doubt it was a roller coaster ride of emotions all day long that culminated in the final victory. The win at this regional competition will allow Team 4001 to compete at the FIRST Robotics World Championship, April 28-30, 2016 in St. Louis, Missouri.

The Ram Robotics Team 4001 is made up of 86 St. Robert CHS students and is led by teachers Bob Chirrey, Amanda Koon, and Eric Fabroa.

Team 4001 is thankful to everyone who came out to support the team at the weekend competition, including many alumni from previous years; Paul Gilbert, CEO of the team's sponsor Quanser Inc.; Peter Martin, a team mentor and Quanser Engineer; Greg Bolton, York OECTA Unit and St. Robert alumnus; Tara Buddo, Hewlett Packard and St. Robert alumna; Jennifer Sarna, St. Robert CHS Principal; Ron Crocco, Superintendent of Education, YCDSB; and Carol Cotton, Chair, YCDSB who was also at Team 4001's first regional victory in 2012.

Thanks also to all of the team's sponsors who have supported the Ram Robotics over the past five years, Quanser; Foxwood; St. Robert CHS; YCDSB; Striowski and Associates; Sayal Electronics Stores; George's Tastee Patties; Princess Auto; PTC; Spectrum Nasco; ventureLAB; and new this year, Ryerson University.

Team 4001 wishes its fellow York Catholic teams, St. Brother Andre 4252, and St. Maximilian Kolbe 4343 the best of luck at their FIRST Robotics Competition for the Greater Toronto East Regional, taking place March 10-12, 2016 at the University of Ontario and Durham College.