2016 SMR Competition. Photo courtesy of HVA Robotics.

2016 SMR Competition.
Photo courtesy of HVA Robotics.

The FIRST Robotics Smoky Mountain Regional is a grueling three-day event, giving teams only six weeks to design, build, and program a complex robot to the specified demands. Held last week in Knoxville, TN, this year’s competition floor was filled with obstacles and barriers built to disrupt even the most advanced bots from completing their mission, commandeering the opposing team’s tower and capturing the flag.


Due to intense preparations and multiple redesigns, the Hardin Valley High School (Knoxville) Robotics team took first place in the Smoky Mountain Regional Competition for the second year in a row. After significant damage in a preliminary round, the team worked together to make vision repairs to their competition bot, the Pultruder, to ultimately emerge victorious in the final match. Hardin Valley Team 3824 and their alliance members, the Roboteers (Team 2481) and The Sparta Bots (Team 4740) will be attending the World Championships in St. Louis later this month.