Simbotics place 12th at world championship

The robotics team from Governor Simcoe has landed a top-12 spot on the world podium for the seventh straight year.

The 22-student Simbotics team competed at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta over the weekend in the world robotics championship.

Reigning world champions, the Simbotics came in a respectable 12th this time around.

“They’re already working on stuff for next year,” said team leader Greg Phillips, a tech teacher at the school. “They’re planning.”

The Simbotics were one of 348 teams in a competition called Lunacy, in which teams are partnered with two other teams.

Their robots pulled trailers and tried to throw 22-centimetre wiffle balls, or moon rocks, into their opposing robot’s trailers. The team that had the fewest moon rocks in its trailer won.

Phillips said it involves a lot of strategy, gathering statistics on other robots to find their strengths and weaknesses.

Over the competition, the teams were divided onto four fields, with 87 teams on each field playing against each other. The four field winners advanced to the Einstein Field to play for the World Championship title.

Governor Simcoe’s team played seven qualifying matches in the beginning and won each one.

They were hopeful when entering the semi-finals, which required two wins. The Simbotics tied their first match and won the second handedly.

But their nemesis changed strategy and won the following two matches.

“We didn’t follow through with our strategy,” Phillips said. “We had to tie up this one particular team, but they were too fast.”

Nevertheless, the team has achieved continued success on the world stage, which Phillips attributes to the best group of mentors he could find. They are a driven team of young engineers, mathematicians and others.

Besides the 12th spot, the Simbotic's team won an award for having the best website. It’s at simbotics.org.