Wonderful, fabulous news and congrats to the student scientists, their teachers, their families and the school community at Ballard High!
From SPS Communications:
High School's robotics team recently laid claim to a first-place win in
the Robotics World Championship in Houston, TX. To win, 27 Viking
Robotics Club teammates, including freshman, sophomores, juniors, and
seniors faced nearly 400 teams from more than two dozen countries,
putting a robot they built in just six weeks through various scenarios
that called for teamwork, concentration, and MAD robot driving skills.
In the end, their team returned home to Seattle, winners of the 26th
annual FIRST Robotics Competition.
The competition is the culmination of a six-week project, in which teams
were tasked with designing and building robots capable of operating on
their own and with a driver. The robots were also required to be able to
climb a rope, travel as fast as 13 miles per hour, and shoot and
retrieve whiffle balls and rubber gears.
The Viking Robotics team was part of a four-team alliance that advanced
through several rounds beating other combined teams. In the final round
of the competition, the Vikings Robotics senior, Morgan Thompson, drove
their robot to fuel a makeshift spacecraft with whiffle balls and gears
it needed for takeoff.
"Before a match I get butterflies in my stomach, but once it starts it's
kind of this weird, kind of numb sensation where you're so focused you
don't notice anything around you," explained robotics team Senior,
Morgan Thompson. "Then all of the sudden the match is over... and you
The Viking Robotics club work on their robot and practice their robot
skills after school with the help and advice of several parent
volunteers and their advisor, Ballard teacher Brian Connolly. Funding
for their robot and travel to competitions comes from outside grants and
Here is the full video of the final match in this year's World Championship.