2018 Colorado State VEX IQ Championships

Here are some thoughts from the team on this year’s state championships.


We did great at the 2017-2018 VEX IQ state championship. We got the Robot skills champion award and the Teamwork skills champion award. We drove with many other robots that helped to get us prepared for worlds and they were great at cooperating and we helped each other a lot. We are excited to go to worlds with other robots that we know of and meet ones that we don’t yet know. I love to meet new teams from all over the world and collaborate with them while driving and while just walking around and checking out other people’s robots. At states we had one big problem with our robot and we worked through it. It helped us to see how to fix certain problems and how to overcome them and drive well in the match. At states we also put up our biggest score at a tournament so far with the team The Brobots. Overall, our tournament went really well even though we had to overcome problems because having had to work through the problems, we learned so much that we can now take to Worlds.


We had a very successful and very exciting Colorado Vex IQ State Championship. While we waited for the Teamwork matches to start, we ran our program and drove Skills. Our program had a few malfunctions, and we learned a lot from them. We definitely have a few ideas for how we can improve our program for Worlds. Driving skills went very well, and we ended up scoring 183 points. After we had used up all of our skills runs, we looked at other robot designs to see what other teams had come up with. There were tons of interesting drive bases and lifts, and we noticed that a lot of teams grab rings off of the wall.

Teamwork matches started, and we got plenty of good pairings. We drove with a Berthoud team, and we ended up averaging 172.125 points. We drove with the Bro Bots and we won the finals with a score of 253 points.

We also learned a lot about sportsmanship and perseverance from the other teams at the event. Many teams had malfunctioning robots, rough matches, and other disappointments. However, they emerged from each difficulty with a smile. We hope to emulate this and face adversity with a positive attitude.

In conclusion, we had a very successful and exciting Colorado Vex IQ State Championship. We ended up winning the Robot Skills Champion Award and the Teamwork Champion Award. We learned a lot about how to improve our program, and just as much about sportsmanship and perseverance. We got to meet many teams we hadn’t seen before, and we saw quite a few interesting robot designs.


Personally, I thought states could have gone better than it did. We got driving matches that could’ve had great scores, but we messed up at some point during the drive and got a lower score than anticipated. It felt kind of relieving to say that we already had skills in our grasps, and we didn’t have to do anymore diving. While we didn’t get the scores we wanted, they were still pretty high. I got nervous to see the bro-bots post a 138 on their first match. Of course it was disappointing to not win Excellence, but I’ll take skills and teamwork; we can focus more on driving instead of judging at worlds.


I think that the 2017-2018 VEX iq state championship was a great Success! We won 2 awards, Teamwork Champion, and the Skills Champions award. We had a good experience with our other companions that we worked with, we spent a lot of time cheering on other teams and cooperated well. I liked walking around the pits and seeing other people’s robots, and giving compliments and criticism. I think that one of the greatest achievements is that we are 3rd in the world out of 2545 other middle school teams. I am super happy that the Row-Bots get to go to worlds. I am excited to got to Louisville, Kentucky for Worlds and have fun meeting other teams, even though some may be from other places and speak other languages. I Can’t wait for Kentucky Kingdom (;

Team 80516 is Going Back to Worlds!

By Coach Michelle | The Tiger Hawks had a great day at the Colorado VEX IQ Ringmaster State Championship, and got to drive with a wide variety of elementary and middle school teams from Colorado’s front range. As always, they learned a lot about teamwork and their robot, both from their successes and their challenges.

At the end of the day, they emerged as Teamwork Champions and Robot Skills Champions. They also held onto their #3 rank in the Middle School World Skills Standings, and they’re going back to the VEX IQ World Robotics Championships in Louisville, Kentucky, for the 2nd year in a row!

We’re excited to see Colorado so well represented at Worlds, and we’re especially happy to be traveling with a couple teams that have become friends of ours this season – Team 1069K–Kryptonite–from Berthod Robotics Club, and Team 6883T–the Row-Bots–from Precision Robotics.

Worlds starts on April 29, and we’ll try to post updates while we’re there (if time and WiFi allow it). It might be possible to watch live-streamed matches and see scores in real-time; the webcast tab at Robot Events should have options and info during the event.

First Ringmaster Tournament!

By Coach Michelle and the team | The team attended their first Ringmaster event–the Red Hawk VEX IQ Robot Challenge–on Saturday, December 9th. Here are several team members’ thoughts on the event and how it went. Enjoy!


“I think that the tournament was a big success. It was fun to cheer our team on with the tiger mascot. I think it is cool that we already qualified for state at our first tournament. Skills went really well, but we had trouble with the program. The robot kept bumping the wall. Our main strategy was to do the ground rings and score on the posts and let the other team do the bonus bin and wall rings. I think it was a really fun and successful tournament over all.”


“I think that the tournament went very well. We ended up not getting our best score for skills, but that was the only bad thing and it wasn’t that bad. Our program scored a 27 which was the reason we won skills. Our teamwork skills were amazing, averaging 90 points per game. Plus in Finals we won with a 132! I think this tournament has been the best overall for us ever.”


“I say the competition was fun. The team I voted for sportsmanship didn’t get it. I enjoyed scoring all the points we did.  Winning with the Spudniks was also fun.”


“I think the competition went well, it was really fun and the team worked well together good. I saw the two people who were driving calmly talking to each other about what to do. When the drivers came back from a match, the rest of the team would congradulate them. I think we could improve our sportsmanship by making sure to congradulate both teams in each match. I think we could improve our driving strategy by trying to make it so our robot doesn’t miss as many rings. Overall, I think we had a great competition and we did really well for our first competition.”


“We did skills and got 92. We did programming and got 27.

Stradagy: Our stradagy to grab rings of the floor was good because most other teams only grabbed rings of the wall, or aimed for the ramp so the combanation was good.

Things to improve: Our robot sometimes got jammed when we picked up a ring and it got stuck under the ramp and made it so we couldnt score rings.

Things we did well at: We did well in skills and won teamwork. We also were improving on Teamwork in the later rounds. I Believe we did very good in the Finals because both Teams (ours and the Yellow Spudniks) were good at cooperating.

Awards: Skills, Teamwork, Eccllence, STEM”

3D Printing with the Tiger Hawks

By Coach Michelle | The team is using 3D printing as an element of their STEM project, and this morning a few of them met their technology teacher, Mr. Schmitz, in the lab at school to fire off prints of some models they made in TinkerCAD.

Mr. Schmitz and the Tiger Hawks 3D printingIf you’ve wondered about 3D printing and have access to a printer, TinkerCAD is a simple and intuitive way to create models that can be printed on a wide range of common 3D printers. A few of the controls take some fiddling to understand, but there are great “how to” videos available to decrease the learning curve. Three of our team members have created models in TinkerCAD, and were ready to see what they’d look like as printed objects.

Tiger Hawk Bethany watching the MOD-t 3D printerPrinting a 3D object on the school’s MOD-t printers, made by New Matter, ended up being almost as easy as printing on my laserjet at home. New Matter’s print engine verifies that your model is printable, and that it fits on the printer’s base plate. If there’s a problem like an oversized object, the software tells you right away and offers some solutions.

Tiger Hawk 3D model on the 3D printerAt the “balanced” setting, which shoots for a happy compromise between print time and print quality, most of the team’s models took less than an hour each to print. The final products matched their visions, for the most part, but a few of their models will require some minor modifications back in TinkerCAD before they try printing again.

We’re lucky to have a well-equipped technology lab at the school that’s available for student use, and a knowledgeable and helpful teacher to work with the kids!


Central Firehawks VEX IQ Challenge earned us a Middle School Excellence Award!

By Coach Michelle | The team had a great day at this tournament, and was honored with a Middle School Excellence Award, the highest award presented in the VEX IQ Challenge. They also brought home another Skills Champion trophy; got a perfect score from the judges on their design, interview, and engineering notebook; and presented their STEM project for the first time with very good results. These kids continue to work so hard, and make us coaches and parents so proud!

January 7 VEX IQ Trophies were Robot Skills Champion and the Middle School Excellence Award