People of B ts
Puerto Rican Pride at the South Florida Robot Riot
● by Dave Graham
Puerto Rican pride was in the house at the South Florida (SFL) Robot Riot as students in grades 7-12
from the Central Visual Arts School in San Juan, Puerto
Rico made their presence known through both their
music and fighting robot skills. The SFL Robot Riot is an
open Insect class fighting robot event conducted in
conjunction with the STEM Tech Olympiad 2012 at the
Miami Convention Center the last weekend in April.
Two Puerto Rican teams — RoboCAV in yellow shirts
and Abusement Park in green shirts (Figure 1) — made
the journey from San Juan to Miami to compete in the
three day fighting robot event, along with their six three
pound Beetleweight bots. Throughout the competition,
the Puerto Rican students proudly displayed their musical
heritage by breaking into song to the beat of their
One morning, they sang as they paraded from the
Convention Center entrance all the way to their pit area.
CNN Espanol interviewed several members of team
RoboCAV (Figure 2) who explained the fighting robot
weight classes and double-elimination format to the
reporter. The students ended the segment by
entertaining the CNN reporting team with a sample of
their music (Figure 3).
Team Abusement Park had the final word as their
three pound Beetleweight bot Phineas beat one of the
best (if not the best) Beetleweight bots and drivers in the
country — Gene Burbeck and his bot One Fierce Lawnboy
— to take the gold. Members of the team display Phineas,
their first place trophy, and a gift certificate donated
from the Robot Marketplace (Figure 4). SV
FIGURE 1. Puerto Rican teams RoboCAV in yellow
shirts and Abusement Park in green shirts.
FIGURE 2. CNN Espanol interviewing members
of team RoboCAV.
FIGURE 3. Members of team RoboCAV singing for the
CNN Espanol reporting team.
FIGURE 4. Members of team Abusement Park with their
first place robot Phineas.
SERVO 08.2012 35