Nothing gets rookies more excited about the upcoming FRC season than GRITS. The Georgia Robotics Invitational Tournament and Showcase is an off-season FRC event in which teams compete in the game from the past season one last time before the new game is announced in January. This year our rookies gained valuable experience as a drive team and pit crew, and will be more prepared than ever for kickoff. Of course, you never are fully prepared for FRC, let’s be real.

We endured the qualification matches with only a few mechanical malfunctions. The chain controlling #Hashtag’s wedge broke in the first match, permanently retiring the feature, RIP wedge. The rookies driving skills improved with every match, earning us a spot on the number 2 seed alliance with 1746 OTTO and 2415 Westminster WiredCats.

A quick flashback… At the 2016 Kennesaw qualifier event, we chose 2415 to join our number 1 seed alliance. Sadly, the alliance lost in the final match of the playoffs. AND, at the Peachtree District State Championship, we chose 1746 to be in our number 1 seed alliance and lost in the playoffs again.

…Back to GRITS

The number 2 seed alliance of 2415, 1746, and us, 4468, three of the best teams in Georgia, came together to form the powerhouse alliance needed to beat 1261 and the top seed alliance. In the last semifinal match, the back bumper of #Hashtag fully detached. Yeah, bad. A field timeout and an alliance timeout bought us a few minutes to repair it with, you guessed it, zip-ties and duct-tape. The repair took long enough that we were forced to sit out one finals match. No problem, 2415 and 1746 won without breaking a sweat. We came back in for the final matches and finished off our opponent, defending our title as GRITS Champions!

A huge thanks to Automation Direct for supplying, as always, the awesome trophies.