A local robotics team was the runner-up at a recent competition with a focus on LGBT pride and support.
Team 4926, also known as GalacTech, competed against and alongside other For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) Robotics Competition teams in the “Rainbow Rumble” competition in Mason, Michigan this past weekend. According to organizers, Rainbow Rumble is “the FIRST event for LGBTQIAA+ FRC Students and Allies.”
GalacTech took a small team of four students and two mentors to Michigan, said Columbus Robotics president and Team 4926 founder Sam Geckler. The team ranked fourth in qualification matches and then formed an alliance for playoffs. There was a round robin among the five playoff alliances, and the top two played the best 2 out of 3 to determine the overall winner. GalcTech’s alliance was one of the two finalists but lost in two matches.
According to Geckler, the exhausted team returned to Columbus around midnight Monday morning. Still, he said that the event was “amazing.” The team played almost twice as many matches as they would at a typical event, making it a “huge challenge.”
“The gym was completely decked out in Rainbows from the referee jerseys, zebra rainbows, flags, banners, knee high socks, hats,” said Geckler. “It was really a great way to celebrate the LGBTQ community and announce the attendees as either part of the community or as allies.”