Sault College played host to the 5th annual Northern Ontario VRC Qualifier, which saw 15 teams from 6 Northern Ontario cities and towns meet in one of eight qualifying tournaments across the province. Local powerhouse “Lone Wolf Robotics”, and independent team from the Sault, and last year’s World Championship qualifier, returned with a brand new but very powerful entry for this new game. Lone Wolf managed to win the event’s top award, the “Excellence Award” for combined performance and judging superiority, and won the first of 6 invitations to the Provincial Championships being held in February in St. Catharines.
In the main event and crowd favorite, the team Matchplay competition, where teams of robots face off against each other, the winning alliance saw Lone wolf join with “Big Vikings” from Michipicoten High School in Wawa, and Sudbury’s “Lockerby Robotics”, which also results in a Provincial berth.
The top judging award, the Design Award, for superior Engineering processes and designs, went to The Big Vikings (Wawa), while a final Provincial invitation was earned by Lone Wolf again, for winning the Robot Skills Award, for posting the highest combined scores in the Driver’s Challenge and Programming Challenge.
Further awards were as follows:
Build Award (strong and efficient robot construction); “Knights and Bolts” from St. Mary’s Collegiate.
Create Award (Creative and innovative robot design); “Team Prisma” (Superior Heights)
Amaze Award (strong scoring strategies and gameplay); “PIVX Panthers” (Barrie)
Judge’s Award (for overall strong performance in multiple categories); “Hornepayne Hawks” (Hornepayne)
Teamwork Award; Lockeryby Robotics (Sudbury)
Energy Award (Peer award for exceptional positive enthusiasm); PIVX Panthers (Barrie)
Sportsmanship Award (Peer award); Big Vikings (Wawa)
Volunteer of the Year; Reno Palombi (for his 11-year history as head referee for our events)
This concludes the high school competition programming for the teams who did not qualify for Provincials, while the elementary school VEX IQ program will hold their qualifying event at Sault College on January 12th and 13th. An estimate 35 teams are expected to meet in friendly competition which will also select champions to advance to their Provincials in Mississauga in early-March.
Event director Jonathan Budau would like to thank league supporter Tenaris Algoma Tubes for their incredible contributions to this program, while PEO (Algoma Chapter) and OACETT once again sponsored the event, while Sault College continued their annual tradition of providing an excellent venue for this event. Algoma District School Board was also acknowledged for their exceptional support that has led to the creation of 46 teams in 25 secondary and elementary schools within the district.