Triple Helix’s Second District Competition a Success!

District Finalists and Chairman’s Award Winners


Triple Helix at the Air and Space Museum

The weekend of March 18 – March 20 proved to be another great success for Menchville’s robotics team, Triple Helix. Competing against 34 other FRC (FIRST Robotics Competition) teams, Triple Helix and team 1885, iLITE, were the only undefeated teams at the end of 70 vigorous qualification matches. Triple Helix entered the elimination bracket ranked first in the entire competition and formed a strong alliance with teams 1885 (iLITE) and 5954 (Portable Chargers). Our alliance battled strongly through the eliminations, undefeated through to the final matches. Facing a strong alliance composed of teams 122 (NASA Knights), 5546 (A.R.T.), and 5804 (TORCH), Triple Helix’s alliance battled through a multitude of nail-biting matches, sadly eventually losing because of two broken robots.

However, not all was lost. Sitting through the awards ceremony, the competition Finalists and Winners were announced at the end and all of Triple Helix’s alliance was able to go down to the field, high-five the judges, and collect their silver medals. Perhaps the highest point of the entire competition was the announcement of Triple Helix as the Hampton Roads District Chairman’s Award Winner. The Chairman’s Award is the most prestigious award at FIRST, it honors the team that best represents a model for other teams to emulate and best embodies the purpose and goals of FIRST. Here’s what the judges had to say about the winning team:

The Chairman’s Award for our event is the most prestigious award at FIRST. You notice we’re talking about it after the folks who won the event, after all sorts of other awards we’ve just talked about. It honors the team that best represents the model for other teams to emulate and best embodies the purpose and our goals here at FIRST. The Chairman’s Award is presented to the team judged to have the most significant measurable impact on its partnerships among its participants and its community over a sustained period, not just a single build season. The winner is able to demonstrate progress towards FIRST’s mission of transforming our culture. The recipient team will be invited to the District Championship where it’s going to compete for the Chairman’s Award against the winners from all the other district events. Now this year’s Chairman’s Award winner embodies the definition of an influencer. They’re a powerful and compelling force that impacts mentors, corporations, local governments, and school boards, who are now embracing the values of FIRST and STEM in their communities. It’s clear that they’re living their own words of inspiring young minds of the world to work for their passion, by hosting more than 4o demonstrations and partnering with schools, universities, and their sponsoring organizations. From raising funds by waiting on tables to organizing and sponsoring a huge off-season FRC event, this team’s DNA has a clear and lasting signature. The next time you’re in Hampton Roads and hear a distinctive Rumble, make no mistake. It’s the positive impact of team 2363, Triple Helix!

Triple Helix’s victorious streak is not over yet, the team will be competing at the Chesapeake District Championships at University of Maryland in College Park, Maryland over spring break (April 7 – April 9). They will need all the luck they can get as they compete against about 53 other reigning teams in the Chesapeake District for the role of Championship Winner and District Chairman’s Winner.