- "Floats like a butterfly."
- — Jonathan Pearce in Series 3
Prizephita was a competitor robot that competed in Series 3-5 of Robot Wars, also withdrawing from Series 8 under construction and ownership of a new team. It was eliminated in the first round of both the third and fourth series, but managed to make the Heat Final of the Fifth Wars after a surprise victory over the seeded Thermidor 2, before losing to higher ranked Wild Thing on a tight and controversial judges' decision.
Versions of PrizephitaEdit
In all televised instances, Prizephita was armed with a small front flipping plate, referred to as its "front uppercut," and a secondary pneumatic ram the "rear jab".
Prizephita (Series 3)Edit
- "With its front uppercut and rear straight jab, this brawler does pack a mean punch, but at 71.2kg, it's the lightest in the heat. Zero turning circle yes. Floats like a butterfly."
- — Jonathan Pearce introducing Prizephita in Series 3
The original Prizephita was a red and yellow-orange box-wedge shaped robot with a picture of Mike Tyson on the wedge. In addition to the front flipper and rear spike, it had a boxing glove on a pneumatic ram that shot straight up to act as a srimech. It was the lightest of the incarnations, weighing 71.2kg.
In preparation for Series 9, the original version of Prizephita was revived using modern internals, and a rear spinner. However, this version of the machine did not qualify for the show.
Prizephita Mk 2 (Series 4)Edit
- "...looks like a little dessert spoon nothing more."
- — Jonathan Pearce commenting on Prizephita Mk 2's tiny flipper
The second incarnation, named Prizephita Mk 2 was a transparent bulletproof polycarbonate wedge shaped robot with a rounded top, so it could self-right much more easily. The Mike Tyson drawing was replaced with an image of a Spitfire fighter plane. The secondary ram was weaponised as a small rear pneumatic spike. The robot cost over £5000 to build, with the polycarbonate shell alone costing £500. The shell had an added capability of trapping opponents armed with spear weapons. It was driven by a lawnmower motor, and weighed 78.9kg.
Prizephita Mach 2 (Series 5)Edit
In Series 5, the robot became known as Prizephita Mach 2. As with many robots in Series 5, it underwent a significant weight gain to weigh in at 96kg, and was around 20cm larger in every dimension. The lawnmower motor was replaced by 24V twin electric motors. Eddy Alcock was friends with Rex Garrod at the time, and Rex helped to set up Prizephita Mach 2's pneumatic systems so that in Series 5 the robot had a more powerful flipper set-up than the Series 4 version; he claimed in the post-battle interview with Thermidor 2 that it was twice as powerful. The flipping plate itself was significantly larger as well.
After Series 5, Prizephita did not return during the show's original run, due to the team's work commitments and because of the money it took to maintain the robot.
Prizephita Mk 3 (Series 8)Edit
After the Prizephita series of robots were sold in 2015, the Ipswich-based team that purchased them qualified for Series 8 of Robot Wars with an updated version of the robot, Prizephita Mk 3. The robot used the same design of Prizephita Mach 2, featuring a new chassis and armour, and the same pneumatic ram modified by Rex Garrod. The pneumatic ram at the rear was removed, intended to be replaced with a secondary flipper. However, Prizephita Mk 3 used the same electrical components as its predecessor, which caused the robot to catch fire a week before filming of the series, and Prizephita Mk 3 was forced to withdraw.
The Prizephita series of robots was entered into Series 3-5 by its team captain and lead builder Roy Alcock, an experienced engineer who spoke eloquently on the show, with Jonathan Pearce once joking that his pre-match interview in Series 3 was overly long. Roy Alcock was notably one of the oldest team captains in Robot Wars, over sixty years in age, with most of his teammates also being around the same age. This was respected by Craig Charles, who commended the team for continuing to compete at this age.
In Series 3 and 4, Roy Alcock was joined by his relative Eddy Alcock. Behind the scenes, Eddy Alcock was a member of The Steering Committee, and partially influenced decisions made on future series of Robot Wars. Eddy Alcock was also renown for his contributions to the live roboteering circuit, hosting the Debenham Robot Rumble events in the early 2000's, where many Robot Wars competitors would battle each other for charitable gain. Eddy Alcock's charitable efforts would earn him an OBE title in 2014, on Queen Elizabeth II's birthday.
The team's other members included Phillip Chaplin, who was present in Series 3 and 4, Sharon Alcock in Series 4, and Bill Morse in Series 5.
After an Ipswich-based team purchased Prizephita Mach 2 in 2015, and the shell of the original Prizephita alongside it, the team captained by Daniel Patrick Hughes Biscoe named themselves Team Prizephita in reference to their machines. The team, consisting of Daniel Patrick Hughes Biscoe and his son Thomas, alongside Jacob Hughes-Gowdy and Jessica Briscoe, qualified for Series 8 with their newly rebuilt machine, Prizephita Mk 3. The team would ultimately not appear on television, after Prizephita Mk 3 caught fire shortly before filming began.
Prizephita initially qualified for The Third Wars after successfully running the obstacle course at the auditions for the series. Prizephita Mk 2 then successfully qualified for Series 4, and Prizephita Mach 2 into Series 5, by competing in live qualification battles. However, it is unknown which robots Prizephita faced to qualify for the series.
Under its new team, Prizephita Mk 3 was selected for Series 8 after applying through online applications, before the robot ultimately withdrew from the competition due to an internal fire.
For Series 9, the new Team Prizephita refitted the original Series 3 chassis of Prizephita with modern internals, and applied a rear spinner to the machine. However, Prizephita was not accepted into Series 9, with the producers stating that they were seeking more modern machines to compete on the show.
In Heat N of the Third Wars, newcomers Prizephita were drawn up against the Adams family with Thing 2 in its first round battle.
In the battle, Prizephita got under Thing 2 at the start and tried to flip it. Thing 2 responded by lifting Prizephita with its spike. It drove in with its wedge and managed to overturn Prizephita by driving around in circles, but Prizephita used its srimech and was back on its wheels. Thing 2 turned it over again and pushed Prizephita into Sergeant Bash's CPZ, where its boxing glove got stuck on the arena wall. As its flipper wasn't working either, Prizephita couldn't self-right. Shunt gave it a hand by righting it but even still, Prizephita had stopped moving and it was left at the mercy of the House Robots. Cease was eventually called and Prizephita was eliminated from the competition.
- "Prizephita taking damage now from Shunt. Righted, but look. There's no strength left in that boxer's legs. In the red corner, and staying there, Prizephita I should think. About to be counted out of Robot Wars."
- — Jonathan Pearce
A new and improved Prizephita machine, Prizephita Mk 2, was drawn up against the number fifteen seeds Wheely Big Cheese and Series 2 competitors Wheelosaurus in the first round melee of the Fourth Wars.
- "The knockout punch comes from that CO2 powered flipper and spike. It can dance around the arena with the lawnmower motors, but the polycarbonate shell will have to take a punch better than last time around. Dumped out in Round 1."
- — Jonathan Pearce introduces Prizephita Mk 2
At the start of the battle, Prizephita Mk 2 flipped Wheelosaurus twice, as Wheely Big Cheese went straight for Sir Killalot, but Wheelosaurus was invertible. Wheely Big Cheese then intercepted and pushed Prizephita Mk 2 into the arena side wall, seizing up one of Prizephita Mk 2's drive motors. Wheely Big Cheese then tried to flip Prizephita Mk 2, but then tried to push and flip Prizephita Mk 2 into Sir Killalot's CPZ. Shunt then came in and axed into Prizephita Mk 2, before dragging it across the arena. The pit of oblivion soon opened and all three robots ended up in it. Although Wheely Big Cheese went in first, the judges ruled that Prizephita Mk 2 was immobilised for too long, so it was eliminated from the competition.
Prizephita had never passed the first round in Robot Wars previously, so it was a major underdog in its first round battle, having to fight the number sixteen seeds Thermidor 2.
Despite Thermidor 2 getting the first flip in on Prizephita Mach 2, the underdogs recovered well and dominated the rest of the battle. Thanks to having the lower ground clearance of the two robots, Prizephita Mach 2 was constantly able to flip Thermidor 2 over with ease, making Thermidor 2 expend gas just to self-right. Eventually, Thermidor 2 was so down on gas in the flipper, it took a long while and a long run-up for it to self-right, after this attempt, the lobster robot broke down after successfully getting back on its wheels, Thermidor 2 was counted out by the Refbot, before being pitted by Sgt. Bash and Prizephita Mach 2 was through to the next round of the Heat.
In the second round, the rising stars Prizephita Mach 2 were drawn up against newcomers The Alien.
Both robots began sluggishly, but Prizephita Mach 2 was narrowly able to avoid the spinning hammer of The Alien. After only a short while into the battle, Prizephita Mach 2 found the ground clearance in its opponent, and narrowly managed to flip The Alien onto its back. The Alien was put in an awkward position, and so couldn't use its unique srimech to self-right. The Alien was soon counted out by the Refbot, and Prizephita Mach 2 was put through to the Heat Final.
In the Heat Final, Prizephita Mach 2 found itself against the number nine seeds Wild Thing. This was a grudge match because Thing 2 had beaten the original Prizephita in the Third Wars.
Prizephita Mach 2 dominated the early stages of this battle, once again using the front flipper to great effect, first flipping Wild Thing onto its back, and after the previous Semi-Finalists self-righted, Prizephita Mach 2 flipped it again, stranding Wild Thing onto its side, Wild Thing fidgeted madly to get back onto its wheels, but couldn't self-right, the Refbot then moved in and was about to count out the seeded machine, but this was then when Wild Thing managed to fall back onto its wheels. Wild Thing then fought back strongly in the late stages of the battle by shoving Prizephita around the arena and into the arena side wall, also scratching away at the shell of Prizephita Mach 2. Cease was eventually called and the battle went to a judges' decision, this was the only Heat Final in the Fifth Wars to go to a Judges' decision. The decision very controversially went in favour of the seeded Wild Thing, eliminating Prizephita Mach 2 from the competition.
- Craig Charles: "Bet you feel cheated?"
- Roy Alcock: "Yeah."
- — After the Judges' decision
Although Prizephita Mk 3 qualified for Series 8 under its new team captained by Daniel Patrick Hughes Biscoe, the robot caught fire internally a week before filming began, and it withdrew from the competition, to be replaced by an unspecified reserve robot.
|PRIZEPHITA - RESULTS|
|The Third Wars - UK Championship|
Heat, Round 1
|Heat N, Round 1||vs. Thing 2||Lost|
|PRIZEPHITA MK 2 - RESULTS|
|The Fourth Wars - UK Championship|
Heat, Round 1
|Heat H, Eliminator||vs. Wheelosaurus, Wheely Big Cheese (15)||Eliminated|
|PRIZEPHITA MACH 2 - RESULTS|
|The Fifth Wars - UK Championship|
|Heat E, Eliminator||vs. Thermidor 2 (16)||Won|
|Heat E, Semi-Final||vs. The Alien||Won|
|Heat E, Final||vs. Wild Thing (9)||Lost|
- Wins: 2
- Losses: 3
|Series||Prizephita Series Record|
|The First Wars||Did not enter|
|The Second Wars||Did not enter|
|The Third Wars||Heat, Round 1|
|The Fourth Wars||Heat, Round 1|
|The Fifth Wars||Heat Final|
|The Sixth Wars||Did not enter|
|The Seventh Wars||Did not enter|
|Series 9||Not selected|
|Series 10||Did not enter|
Outside Robot WarsEdit
Team member Eddy Alcock organised the Debenham Robot Rumble, the 'Charity Event' that preceded events nowadays. He was awarded an OBE for his Charitable work (which included the Robot Rumble) on the Queen's birthday in 2014.
In September 2015, Prizephita Mach 2 was put up for sale on eBay, alongside the shell of Series 4's Prizephita Mk 2. The robot was sold for £300 to its new team, who attempted to compete in Series 8 with Prizephita Mk 3. The same team also separately bought the chassis, armour, and pneumatic ram of the original Prizephita.
The three Prizephita robots owned by the new team currently reside at Iceni Auto Services. The team had intentions of building a Prizephita Mk 4 in the future, though these plans never came to fruition. The modern day Team Prizephita sold various parts of Prizephita Mach 2 and Mk 3 on eBay in October 2016. A wheel, Two parts of Prizephita Mach 2's rear panel and its gas valve were sold for £12, £17, £10 and £5 respectively, while the remaining items were not sold.
- In the Third Wars, the team members' names on the stat board were mistakenly shown as those from Rattus Rattus.
- Of the fifty robots to return from Series 4 to compete in Series 5, Prizephita Mach 2 is one of only ten to perform better in its Series 5 appearance. The others are Bigger Brother, Firestorm, Diotoir, Razer, Kat 3, Reactor, Rick, Destruct-A-Bubble and Clawed Hopper.
- Of all teams' introductions in Series 3, Prizephita's was the longest with Jonathan Pearce saying "Enough talk! Enough hype!" afterwards.
- All of Prizephita's losses were to a robot that would become a semi-finalist in the series it appeared in.