FIRST Robotics Competition Blog

Timeout Process (and Playoff Tournament!) Review

Jun 30, 2022 Written by Fiona Hanlon, FIRST Robotics Competition Team Experience Specialist




As mentioned earlier this year in our Timeout Trouble blog, we are committed to reviewing the timeout process now that the season is over. In discussing how to approach this project, we wanted to be open to ideas that may come up that expand beyond just timeouts so we are reviewing the entire playoff process.  

To help us with this task, we have formed a small working group that is composed of members of the FIRST community and FIRST staff. With their permission, we wanted to share who is on the group as well as some experience they bring:

Name Location Experience
Bryan Herbst Minnesota
  • FIRST Alum (Team 2052),
  • Team Mentor (Team 2052),
  • FIRST Technical Advisor (FTA),
  • FIRST in Upper Midwest Board of Directors,
  • Minneapolis Regional Planning Committee Member 
Collin Fultz Indiana
  • FIRST Alum (Team 234),
  • Game Design Lead,
  • FIRST Robotics Competition Senior Program Manager
Eric Stokely Washington
  • Team Mentor (Team 360 and 5295),
  • Woodie Flowers Award Winner,
  • Volunteer,
  • FIRST Senior Mentor
Fiona Hanlon New Hampshire
  • FIRST Alum (Team 1011),
  • Team Mentor (previously Team 1011 & 498 and now Team 238),
  • FIRST Robotics Competition Team Experience Specialist
Hasan Bilgin Istanbul, Turkey
  • Team Mentor (Team 6064),
  • FTA,
  • Technical Coordinator for Fikret Yuksel Foundation
Jared Russell California
  • FIRST Alum (Team 341),
  • Software, Robot Architecture, and Strategy Mentor (previously Team 341 and now Team 254) 
Karthik Kanagasabapathy Ontario, Canada
  • FIRST Alum (Team 188),
  • Longtime mentor (Team 1114) focusing on strategy and analytics,
  • Emcee,
  • and now working for FIRST Canada
Kate Pilotte New Hampshire
  • Game Design Lead,
  • FTA,
  • FIRST Robotics Competition Senior Kit of Parts Manager
Liz Smith Indiana
  • FIRST Alum (Team 555),
  • Team Mentor (Team 3940),
  • FTA,
  • Longtime volunteer
Marshall Massengill North Carolina
  • FIRST Alum (Team 900),
  • Team Mentor (Team 900),  
  • Volunteer
Melissa Smith California
  • FIRST Alum (Team 1251),
  • Head Referee, &
  • FIRST Board of Directors Member
Troy Douglas New York
  • FIRST Alum (Team 270),
  • Team Mentor (Team 1468),
  • Head Referee,
  • Volunteer across all programs &
  • most recently Program Delivery Partner (PDP) for FIRST LEGO League Challenge for FIRST Long Island

As you can see, these volunteers bring a lot of experience, and we are focused on creating a solution that works best for all involved parties. We are so thankful for this group’s time and effort and we will share more information as we finalize a plan in the fall.

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One problem my Team had this year was when it came to finals we were desperately using our timeout and the other Alliance's timeouts to cool down our CIMs. Even with the cooling blocks we had to revert to Dust Off Spray which was unideal. More time between final matches would be nice because we ended with unrepairabke damage on our CIMS causing them to breakdown at the next regional.

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