Out of state competitions.

If I go to a competition out of state, will my skills scores still help me qualify for my own state championship?

That’s a really good question. I don’t believe that’s been answered before; at least I don’t remember it being covered in a direct way. But I could be wrong.

First, the definitive answer to this question will come from you regional REC rep.

That said, here’s my take on it: Your skills score will definitely count for Worlds skills rankings as presented in the official source of such data, RobotEvents. I know that’s not your question. However, my further answer is based on that, so I put that forth as groundwork. Any skills score you receive in an official tournament will be reported to RobotEvents. Then, when your state REC rep makes a list of teams and skills rankings for purpose of determining who receives the “double qualifying” spots for your state tournament, the REC rep will use RobotEvents to create the skills rank list.

Given that sequence of events, it seems all but certain that out-of-state skills scores count for this purpose. To do otherwise would require that the REC rep create a list of skills scores by hand from the official RobotEvents scores for the individual tournaments held in your state. If they intended it to work that way, it seems likely they would have created a tool to do that. And they didn’t.

Of course, all this is just my opinion.

Yes, unless something has changed, all state/regional spots that are not already allocated will be pulled from the global skills rankings. I’m not even sure if there is an option to automatically pull up top skills earned in a specific region (not that the feature wouldn’t be cool). For smaller states and regions that have less than 10 events it wouldn’t be too hard to do by hand, but for large regions or geographic areas that split regions (Milwauke/Chicago for example) it would hurt program growth if you told teams to stay in your area. I always try and take my teams to one out of area event a year, weather permitting, so that they can see what others are doing and it’s justified by being able to run skills.

I have asked a Q&A question about this, but it has not been answered yet.

I am glad to hear that Skills scores have previously been treated the same regardless of the tournament’s location. If this was true in previous years, I expect it to be true again this year. Before this season, I was not sure whether it was true, although it does seem to be the most likely interpretation of this season’s rules.

Including all official Skills scores is the most logical approach in my team’s opinion, because in Skills, you are competing by yourself, and the only things that affect your score are your own performance, the number of Skills runs you are able to do, and any advice you receive from other teams.

In my state (Florida), out-of-state Skills scores have usually not made a difference in the past, because there were only a few teams in Florida that were close to Alabama or Georgia, and the few that were close to the border either (A) did not qualify for the State Championship, or (B) qualified for it through an event in Florida.

This year, however, the ruling about out-of-state Skills scores may have a much greater effect, because Florida might be split into two separate regions (South and North/Central). There will likely still be teams from one region who attend tournaments in other regions (including my team), albeit likely not as much as in previous years if the split occurs. Either way, there will likely be more Skills-based Worlds spots available for Florida this year than there were in most previous years. (There are 15 spots for high school already, and I predict that many more will come in January with the sudden influx of new teams in South Florida.)

P.S. If Skills scores are treated the same regardless of an event’s region, I suppose this would mean region does not matter for a Skills Only event, other than how it affects (1) the travel distance and (2) whether the event is official.