TA’s VEX Robotics Team Launches New Season
September 08, 2022
When the school year opened on Aug. 23, TA’s VEX Robotics team 4886 wasted no time getting to work on the VEX 2022-2023 challenge. This year’s game, called “Spin Up,” is a fun take on disc golf: each alliance’s robots have to be able to shoot discs into the 12′ x 12′ field’s two “high goals.” And when they miss, it costs them – giving an automatic point for the opposing alliance. Robots can also score by spinning one the four rollers set up on the field perimeter to their team color, or by covering as much of the field as possible in the “Endgame.” There’s a lot going on in Spin Up, but TA’s teams are up for the challenge.
Already, students are using every inch of the robotics classroom (formerly known at TA as the “Choral Mansion”) for strategizing, building, coding, and practice. With several returning members and a slate of new students on board, there will be multiple sub-teams for 4886 this year – each building its own competition robot. Competitions begin in October for the VT/NH region and TA will be traveling region-wide throughout the fall and winter. If they have a season anything like last year – when 4886 teams swept the State Championship, and five out of the six earned spots at Worlds – they could be competing through spring as well.
One big change for the team is the semi-retirement of the team’s coach, former TA faculty member Marc Chabot, who has led the team for since its inception. This year, he is passing the torch to parents Leif LaWhite and Jonathan Crossett. LaWhite and Crossett are no strangers to 4866, though, or the mechanics of competition season. Both have been key parent volunteers for several years, and have been a big part of the team’s successes. As he transitions from the lead coaching role, Chabot plans to continue to be available for the team. “He knows so much,” said Crossett, “We’re lucky to have his experience and expertise.”
We’re looking forward to sharing more from Team 4886 as the season progresses–we have a good feeling about this year!