STANDISH — In the first two competitions of the 2019 season, the Bonny Eagle Robotics Team came in first and second place, securing a spot at District Championships in the process.

At the District Southern New Hampshire Event March 16-17, the 25-member team won 10 out of 12 seed matches. In the semifinals, one of the robots was broken, so a backup bot was introduced. Still, the team won both the quarterfinals and semifinals and was the first seed heading into the finals.

Bonny Eagle was not only victorious in the competition, it also won the Industrial Design Award sponsored by General Motors, which celebrates form and function in a machine. BERT also gained enough points to secure a spot at the District Championships at Worcester Polytechnic Institute April 11-13.

The next weekend, BERT competed at the Rhode Island District Event. The team was the fourth seed heading into the finals and was selected by the second alliance to compete with them. The alliance made it to the final, although its third robot needed to be replaced.

Nevevertheless, BERT won second place in addition to the Quality Award sponsored by Motorola Solutions Foundation, which celebrates machine robustness in concept and fabrication.

Team co-captain Heidi Corbeil said “the competitions are really fun” and added that she was “surprised by how well we did (at the two competitions). Generally we have more simple designs that work really well.”

The team’s next competition will be at the Androscoggin Bank Colisée in Lewiston April 5-6, then the District Championships April 11-13.

“I’m looking forward to it. I think we’ll probably be doing well. I’m pretty confident,” Corbeil said.

BERT then hopes to head to the World Championships April 24-27 in Detroit.

Heidi’s mother Heather Corbeil, a team mentor, said the team is still considering its financial options.

“We are good enough to go, we would like to go, but it’s all about the money,” she said.

Jane Vaughan can be reached at 780-9103 or at [email protected]

The Bonny Eagle Robotics Team won first place at its first competition of the season.

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