04 May 2022

Pupils secure Innovation Award at VEX Robotics National Competition

Our VEX Robotics team enjoyed two successful days of competition in Telford, and the team was delighted to have finished 6th overall in the UK Knockout stages. The highlight, however, has been, the team winning The Lovelace Division Innovate Award, an international award for the invention of 33363A, JL Vulcan. Our team are still in great awe to have won this award which is presented to a team with the most effective and efficient design process.

Competing against teams across the UK is no easy feat, but the friendly atmosphere of this competition gave the team confidence to settle in. There were two separate divisions within the competition, Lovelace and Brunel, and John Lyon were in the Lovelace Division. To support in showcasing inventions each team has its own ‘pitstop’, which was the place where team members prepared, designed, and fixed. It was also the space where teams were interviewed by the judges for consideration of the awards on offer.

For the VEX IQ Challenge, our team was paired up with another team and the aim was to work together to get the maximum number of points available. We took part in qualifications matches, which determine who gets to the knockout stages, and much to our delight, we were successful in our matches and as a result made it to the final play offs. The highlight was when our team achieved a score of 124 with ‘The Rubber Bands’ from  Queen Elizabeth’s School which made us both the highest-ranking score in our entire division.

For the final play offs, our alliance partner was CyberForce from Queen Elizabeth’s School. It was great for our team to strategise and communicate effectively to ensure the teams could score as many points as possible together. Our team had devised a strategy for each member to clear our own side of the Pitching In Arena. This strategy allowed for the robots not interfering with one another, but also ensuring that we got most of the balls on the arena.

“This was John Lyon’s first ever competitive VEX Robotics season and taking part has far surpassed our expectations and what we thought we would achieve. Qualifying and participating in The VEX IQ Challenge UK National Championship 2022 has been an incredible honour and an amazing learning opportunity and experience for all of us.  We hope to continue our journey through VRC and cannot wait to see what the new John Lyon VEX IQ team come up with” – Hemang

This opportunity has been made possible thanks to the support of the 1876 Fund, enabling the purchase of robots and entry into the competition. Many thanks to all in our community who have contributed to this success.