This weekend The Hitchhikers attended the first annual South Carolina Robotics Invitational and Workshops. I was able to convince the team to go after all the fun that I had at TNT last month. I volunteered to ref the event to get more experience before next season. After the long drive down Friday night, including a stop at FU to visit Lauren, we were all up before 7 so we could arrive at the venue right around when it opened at 7:30.
After we got to Columbia High School and got all settled in I went to go check out the field and was told by the event organizers that the SC/NC head ref, Terrell, who was coming to SCRIW to head ref was at a Lego League event and wasn't going to be in until the afternoon and until then I would be filling in as head ref. Naturally I accepted and got to train the rest of the refs and scorekeepers. Overall the event went really well and I once again really enjoyed being on the field crew. Even when Terrell arrived just near the end of qualifying he was cool with letting me continue to head ref and was more than happy to help.
Getting to see how another offseason event, besides TNT, is run was interesting especially since I am trying to put together an offseason event in North Carolina. It also showed how spoiled we are at TNT, not that SCRIW was badly run because it wasn't. At SCRIW the AndyMark guys were running the field and the rest of field crew was a bit shorthanded, while at TNT Krunch basically supplies the entire field crew made up of alumni and mentors. It showed me that not only do you need enough teams but you also need volunteers and hopefully North Carolina has them.
As for team 2059, we went 2-4 was seeded 17th and 17 and was not selected for elimination. It wasn't really that disappointing to me because I was working, what I was really disappointed about was the fact that we seemed to have the same problems, with the robot and the team, which we had at North Carolina. Despite having a bunch of new students and 6 months to work on the robot we still aren't up to our potential. Hopefully we can correct these problems and get the team firing on all cylinders by January.