‘Teamwork and strategy made this happen’: L.C. Bird RoboHawks places 4th in World Championship

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CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — Students from L.C. Bird High School in Chesterfield did not return from the robotics FIRST Championship empty-handed

The L.C. Bird RoboHawks placed 4th out of 408 teams from all over the globe, including Canada and Israel.

This was the first time in school history a robotics team was able to achieve that level of recognition.

There are 39 members from all grade levels on the team.

The RoboHawks told 8News that achieving a high world ranking takes more than building a fast robot, it requires teamwork and strategy.

The team built a robot named “Concussion” in just six weeks that landed them in one of the top spots at World Championships in Detroit at the end of April. 

“The 10 qualification matches you’re randomly assigned your alliance partners..who you’re on a team with,” L.C. Bird RoboHawks CEO William Bigger said. “You know three robots on each team.”

Bigger explained that there are two game elements that the robot needs to manipulate and efficiently put on the cargo ship or the rocket.

Senior CTO Michael Yanoschak lead the design for “Concussion” to complete those tasks during competition.

“I drive the robot and then during the match, if something does happen..if something does break I can easily tell what it is,” Yanoschak said. “Just since where I am and can see it instantaneously and see oh that’s wrong and fix it if we need to.”

With “Concussion” back at home the RoboHawks define their achievements as a true team effort.

“If you know you just programmed the lights, having that hand in the bot, it really does mean something,” Bigger said.

The RoboHawks weren’t the only robotics team from Central Virginia to compete at the World Championship.

Teams from Thomas Jefferson High School in Richmond and Deep Run High School and J.R. Tucker High School in Henrico County also battled it out in Detroit last week.

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