BotBash 2003 Deployment Report

"Carnivores, Carnies, and Carnage"

BotBash by the Sea was in many ways one of the best events I've been to, and at the same time one of the most frustrating. An inflexible computer system and some poor organization combined on Saturday's first session to create a MASSIVE scoring problem for the 30lb weightclass. Put simply, there were at least two, possibly more matches where the win/loss was awared exactly BACKWARDS to the appropriate result. If we scored a goal, we lost. If we got scored on, we won. This had a huge effect on the tournament bracket. Helios, who should have been 1-1 was eliminated from the tournament with an erroneous 0-2 record. Little Rat, who was 0-2 after two fights ended up atop the leader board as 2-0 and came back for two more fights. Curiously the errors conserved Dozer's record at 1-1 (we were in BOTH fights that were scored wrong), but we were indirectly affected since we ended up fighting opponents we shouldn't have and didn't get to face Helios which we'd been looking forward to.

For the record, I want to make it clear that I don't hold any of the competitors responsible. Tony Hall and a couple of others did exactly what I would have done, continued fighting as long as someone was calling my name to the box. I feel bad for Pete Covert and Helios, even with some "make up" points added in at the end they didn't do as well as they probably would have if they'd gone through the brackets unfettered. Clearly there were some organizational issues, and we also learned a bit more about the pitfalls of the 2-on-2 format, especially with only two weight classes and only 16 robots per class.

As always, I have a LOOOONG list of people I feel indebted to. Hopefully I wont miss anyone.

And finally, I always have to give a special "Thank You" to my darling wife Kimberley. As always she functioned as team manager and made sure my energies were properly directed. She saved my life by delivering a perfect grilled-onion Bratwurst (no small feat for a Vegetarian), just moments before I surely would have fainted. She also saved the skin of myself and several others (literally) with constant pushing of sunscreen and on-site Hat-delivery. As team photographer she got some of the best images we've ever brought home, and it took a long time to sort through the hundreds of great images to find the select few I've shared below. Most importantly, though, she supports me in all of my wacky endeavors and is always my biggest fan. If I ever figure out why such a fantastic lady choses to hang with a mook like me, I'll bottle it and make her a rich woman. I love you Kimberley!

Enough mush, lets see some pictures! NOTE: I have higher resolution copies of all of these images. If you wish to use them, please email me at for permission and copies! Click on the thumbnails for "medium" sized copies.


Ready to rock at 9AM! But the arena took slightly longer...

The new pendulum, and Killball Fire == cool;

Forks twanged courtesy of Little Rat And he was my teammate for one of these...

I think next time, chromolly Hammer flat, fight Little Rat, repeat...

My titanium scoop. Worked OK for Killball. Overview of a portion of the pits.

BotBash on the BIG screen!
(and in the beer garden, too!)
Waiting for the pit, just before I scored a goal
(and lost the fight, due to misscoring)

Tony watches Pete and I making repairs. The fair moved our location at the last minute
apparently the MARCA was crushing the grass...

More Killball with Little Rat Pops some big air when I miss!

Bashing bots and dodging fireballs! I think I actually got him over with this one.

The tip of the left fork came off after this one. Challenging VD3's authoritah...

... and getting burned for the trouble. And bitten too!

R&R on the DeWalt gearbox... ...and finding the motor pinion is jammed against the case.

Sunday's drivers meeting to explain the scoring mixup Topping up and ready to fight.

Lining up with Tony, ready to start Day 2 Retrieving the ejected Dozer.

And ejecting VD3 as payback for Saturday! Finally in a fight with Helios!

5th Place Overall, not too shabby. We lost 4th place in a tiebreaker
when VD3 gave us this.

1/8" Ti makes an excellent trophy... ... and still a perfect fit!

Well that's it. We're debating where to go from here. Dozer survived with minimal damage, so we'll probably campaign him again, but I'm thinking of taking a break from any new builds for a while...

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