4 Items for today!
- Grants Available
- Tournament Registration Opening 10/09 @ 7pm
- Scrimmages/Workshops – 10/22 and 10/29
- Getting Ready For Qualifying Tournaments
There are still grants available for teams that qualify! Rookie team grants and PG&E grants are still available!
If you are applying for the Rookie Team Grant, make sure not to pay for your team registration until after hearing about your grant status. The Rookie grant includes a registration waiver.
Tournament Registration Opening 10/09 @ 7pm
Registration for qualifying tournaments will begin Sunday, October 9th at 7pm with the 1st Play registration for the October/November tournaments. Not sure what “1st Play” means? There is a brief explanation of the phases of registration available on the website.
Tournaments for December & January are still being confirmed and registration for them will follow later in October and November. See the 2016 Velocity Vortex Qualifying Tournament Registration Page for more info on the registration timelines!
There are a few changes to the process this year that are worth understanding:
- Teams must be “eligible” to compete before they will be allowed to register. This requires that the team has paid its registration fee with FIRST and has 2 screened coaches associated with the team. Teams that are not currently eligible will not be able to register for tournaments
- Registration waves only run through “3rd Play”. FIRST Tech Challenge rules limit a team to earning judged awards or advancing to the NorCal FTC Regional Championship at only the 1st three NorCal Qualifying Tournaments that they attend. Teams wishing to compete beyond 3 events do so only for fun and learning.
- Waitlist – this year we will be maintaining a waitlist for teams that are interested in attending tournaments beyond 3 or to fill in space at tournaments that are currently full. The Waitlist will be an ordered list. If/when a tournament space becomes available, it will be offered to the first team in the Waitlist. If that team declines, they are moved to the end of the Waitlist and the opportunity is passed to the next team in order until the space is filled or all teams have declined.
- Out-of-Region teams – this year, teams from outside the NorCal FTC region will need to contact Playing At Learning to be allowed to register during the “3rd Play” phase of registration
We have two pre-season scrimmages/workshops planned for October. These are informal, low stress opportunities to do a quick check of your robot on a full playing field with other robots in action too!
We will have “inspectors” on hand to help teams prep and be ready for robot inspection at their qualifying tournaments.
10/22 9am-4pm The Play Space – Scrimmage & Robot Check
10/29 1pm-6pm The Play Space – Scrimmage, Robot Check & Scarifier Setup
Details on how to RSVP for these scrimmages will be announced soon!
Getting Ready for Qualifying Tournaments
Every year, our early season tournaments struggle to keep their schedules because teams aren’t prepared! There are several things your team can do to help make sure everyone at the tournament has a great day!
- Show up on time! The tournament depends on the teams showing up on time and being ready for inspection and judging during the morning hours. Don’t assume that you can show up late and that everyone will adapt to your lateness! If something happens and your team is going to be late, let the tournament director know as soon as possible.
- Get inspected early! All teams that are going to participate in match play at a tournament MUST pass inspection. The tournament match list can’t be completed until the status of robot inspection is known for all teams. Too many events run late because teams don’t prioritize getting their robot inspected and make the entire morning run slowly. Robot inspection for all teams should be completed no later than 10am! Teams that make no attempt to get their robots inspected in a timely manner should expect that there is a high probability of not being included in the match schedule for the tournament! It is not fair to the other teams to expect everyone to wait for your team to finish inspection.
- Pre-inspect your robot Take the time to run through a mock inspection of your robot before coming to a tournament. The two scrimmages in October are great opportunities to have a 3rd-party inspection of your robot to make sure you don’t have any inspection surprises at your tournaments. There is a set of inspection checklists (Robot Inspection & Field Inspection) included in Part 1 of the Game Manual. Use them!
- Know the event schedule & match schedule All qualifying tournaments in NorCal run with the same basic schedule. There should be no surprises! Your team should pay attention to the match list when it is published and know what matches you are playing in! Plan on being ready a match or two ahead of your scheduled matches!
- Practice match setup Pre-match robot setup (and post-match removal from the field) can significantly slow down a tournament day. Practice your setup routine. If it takes you longer than 60 seconds to setup your robot for a match, you should re-evaluate your plans! Discussions with alliance partners about robot placement should happen in the queue, not on the field.
With your team’s help, the events should all run smoothly and on time!