2011 Top Dogs

Sep 19, 2011

Northville Robostangs, Grand Blanc Enginerds and Romulus Extreme Eagles win the Top Dog trophies at the 12th Annual Kettering Kickoff FIRST Robotics contest.

The Northville Robostangs motored away with three of the highest awards presented at the 12th Annual Kettering Kickoff FIRST Robotics competition at Kettering University in Flint on Saturday, Sept. 17.

The Robostangs shared #1 Top Dog honors with the Grand Blanc Enginerds and the Romulus Extreme Eagles as the three-team alliance won the day-long FIRST pre-season robotics event.  The Northville team also won the Robot Design Excellence Award and the Number One Seed trophy.  Robot Design Excellence Award goes to the team whose robot demonstrates excellence in aesthetics, performance, reliability, simplicity, efficiency and innovation.  The Number One Seed is the highest seeded alliance during the tournament, based on scoring performance.

About 800 visitors attended the FIRST contest that attracted 40 teams – one from Canada and the rest from Michigan.  This year's game was called LOGO MOTION, featuring robots moving inflatable squares, circles and triangles to score points, plus the performance of a team's mini-bot.

Kettering Kickoff Founder Bob Nichols said the Kettering Kickoff is a popular pre-season FIRST contest in Michigan.  “It matches the 2011 robots from FIRST Robotics with 2011-12 high school teams,” he explained. “It allows teams to build skills and teamwork camaraderie before the new FIRST competition season begins in January.

“Our 2011 Kettering Kickoff was smooth and flawless,” Nichols said.  “Our fantastic organizing committee has a lot of experience.  It works so well.  Our volunteers are simply awesome.  Kettering is grateful for the superb group that gathered at our 12th annual event, both volunteers and teams,” he added.

Overall winners of the tournament, The Top Dog Award, went to the three first-place teams:
Team 326, Extreme Eagles, Romulus
Team 548, Robostangs, Northville
Team 2337, Enginerds, Grand Blanc.

The Big Dog Award, second-place in the tournament, was shared by:
Team 27, Team Rush, Clarkston
Team 1243, The Dragons, Swartz Creek
Team 1684, The Chimeras, Lapeer.

Other top awards at the Kettering Kickoff went to:
The Robot Design Excellence Award – Team 548, Robostangs, Northville.
The Safety Award - Team 3667, PoHo Robots, Port Huron.
The "Long Shot" Award – Team 1075, Sinclair Sprockets, Whitby, Ontario.
The #1 Seed Award - Team 548, Robostangs, Northville.

Top Score of the Day - An alliance of Team 51, Wings of Fire of Pontiac; Team 1075, Sinclair Sprockets of Whitby, Ontario; and Team 2137, TORC of Oxford.

The Spirit of FIRST Award - Team 862, Lightning Robotics of Plymouth.

The 'Kick Hunger' Award -- a food drive on behalf of the Food Bank of Eastern Michigan was won by Team 314, Big Mo, Flint.

Teams competing Saturday were all from Michigan, with one from Ontario:
Team 27, Team RUSH, Clarkston
Team 33, Killer Bees, Auburn Hills
Team 51, Wings of Fire, Pontiac
Team 68, Truck Town Thunder, Ortonville
Team 70, More Martians, Goodrich
Team 217, ThunderChickens, Sterling Heights
Team 226, Hammerheads, Troy
Team 247, Da Bears, Berkley
Team 302, The Dragons, Lake Orion
Team 314, Megatron Oracles, Flint
Team 322, F.I.R.E., Flint
Team 326, Extreme Eagles, Romulus
Team 468, Aftershock, Flint
Team 494, Martians, Goodrich
Team 503, Frog Force, Novi
Team 548, Robostangs, Northville
Team 703, Team Phoenix, Saginaw
Team 815, Advanced Power, Allen Park
Team 862, Lightning Robotics, Canton
Team 910, Foley Freeze, Madison Heights
Team 1075, Sinclair Sprockets, Whitby, Ontario, Canada
Team 1188, OakTown Crewz, Royal Oak
Team 1189, Gearheads, Grosse Pointe
Team 1243, Dragons, Swartz Creek
Team 1322, G.R.A.Y.T. Leviathons, Fenton
Team 1506, Metal Muscle, Flint
Team 1684, The Chimeras, Lapeer
Team 1701, Robocubs, Detroit
Team 2137, TORC - The Oxford RoboCats, Oxford
Team 2145, HAZMATs, Lake Fenton
Team 2337, EngiNERDS, Grand Blanc
Team 2604, Metal & Soul, Capac
Team 2619, The Charge, Midland
Team 2832, The Livonia Warriors, Livonia
Team 2960, Automation Nation, Birmingham
Team 3096, Finney Highlanders, Detroit
Team 3450, Random Nuts, Flint
Team 3534, Team Gizmo, Davison
Team 3667, PoHo Robos, Port Huron
Team 3770, BlitzCreek, Midland

During the Kettering Kickoff, a variety of automobiles were on display, including a Chevy Volt and Chevrolet, Buick and GMC products from Patsy Lou Williamson Dealership in Flint and Al Serra also provided GM products for visitors to see.

FIRST, For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology, is a national effort to inspire youth to explore career possibilities in engineering, science and technology.  FIRST robotics pits teams in a head-to-head competition between large radio-controlled robots built by teams of high school students and sponsoring engineers and teachers.

Kettering University is located in Flint, Michigan, and is the country's premier engineering, science and business university dedicated to experiential learning and co-op education.  Kettering is a national leader in preparing entrepreneurs and innovators.  For more information, visit www.kettering.edu   For more on the Kettering Kickoff, visit: http://bulldogs.kettering.edu/ketteringfirst/

Written by Patricia Mroczek