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Trenton Regional:

The team attended the Trenton Regional determined and motivated. The FIRST match we were in, an opponent's Robot came from across the field and hit the wall. Our controls went flying, the electronics had been jarred and something was loose. Because of this action and what had just occurred to Team 75, FIRST had changed the rules. Operators were allowed to protect their operator control stations.

Our next match was disheartening, because the unseen damage and the robot did some crazy thing in autonomous mode and the arm crashed into the computer. Then the mechanics started to fail. We broke four drive shafts in four matches. The team held their heads high and remained professional. The Team focused on what we do best by helping others in technical areas, provide business solutions and were "Gracious Professionals". Because of these actions we were selected to win the Kleiner, Perkins,Caufield and Byers Entrepreneurship Award for providing the best business model.

Team 75 also had three state resolutions bestowed to FIRST through their efforts in working with the state legislature.

Chesapeake Regional:

We regrouped from NJ and the team utilized their training from FPX (Flawless Project Execution) and analyzed the setbacks. They assembled a new offensive plan and went to Chesapeake with a regional championship in mind.

We had arrived in Chesapeake and the field had many rookies and teams who were overwhelmed with this year's competition. Once again we focused on putting our friends on the field, and like last year many teams could not pass inspection, thirty two in all. Team 75 helped eighteen teams pass inspection. Team 75 sent a special invitation to John W Dudas (Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office) and he attended and sought out Team 75.

The competition then started and we fought from the heart. We had achieved ninth place and finally settled in at thirteenth after all the dust settled. We were selected by the seventh place team and had lost in the quarterfinals. Our partner broke its shooting mechanism but it was a great effort. This competition was not over. One of our Safety Captains won the safety Star of the day. This was a collaborated effort from many.

The team was approached by a Judge in the stands and was thanked for their sportsmanship and acknowledgments to the other teams. The team had written an essay about their mentor Carmine Rizzo to FIRST. Based on this essay the Woody Flowers Award committee selected him as the top regional mentor and he was presented with the Woody Flowers Award. He was never so proud of the students the he had partnered with. The team then was then selected to be The Engineering Inspiration Winners. This is the Second Place award at the competition behind the Chairman's award.

FIRST Championship:

It is with great pleasure that we report to you that the RoboRaiders robotics team ended the 2008 robotics season as strong as ever. Although this year was seen as a rebuilding year as we had 37 incoming freshman, the team returned from the Championship Event in Atlanta, GA with an impressive list of accomplishments.

Please read on to learn more about the Team's accomplishments. The RoboRaiders were awarded the 'Johnson & Johnson Gracious Professionalism Award', which celebrates outstanding sportsmanship and gracious professionalism in the heat of competition, both on and off the playing field (A very prestigious award!).

There were almost 350 teams competing at the Championship and only about 20 awards given out. These teams were the best at the regionals and had won their way to compete at the Championship. This award acknowledges the incredible effort that our students and mentors have exerted during each of this year's competitions that ensured countless robotics teams were able to participate in the competition.

Many exciting things happened in Atlanta. Here is a quick review:
  1. Former President Bush was present for opening ceremonies on Friday! He has been a supporter of FIRST since its beginning in 1992.
  2. The robot performed very well, the drivers and pit crews did an excellent job, and everyone had a great time. We had some extremely exciting matches during Friday and Saturday. Although everyone did his or her part, Team 75 was not ranked very high by the end of the seeding matches and was not chosen by an alliance for the finals.
  3. The Chairman's Judges awarded 4 of Team 75's members with a recognition pin for Gracious Professionalism. (Rohith Surampudi, Brittany Capalbo, Rebecca Doyle and Carmine Rizzo).
  4. The RoboRaiders also received 4 'Team Issued Awards':
    • Safest Pit Award - awarded by Team 45 from Kokomo, IN
    • Gracious Professionalism Award - awarded by Team 203 from Sicklerville, NJ
    • Best Alliance Partner - awarded by Team 703 from Saginaw, MI
    • 3 'Bird of Friendship' Awards from Team 2629 from Queretaro, Mexico.
The Roboraiders were awarded the Johnson & Johnson Gracious professionalism Award, which celebrates outstanding sportsmanship and gracious professionalism in the heat of competition, both on and off the playing field.