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"You know what cats are like - they're lovely, but then they've got a dark side. They can lash out. They can be fierce."
— Suzi Perry

The Cat was a robot which competed in Robot Wars: Battle of the Stars, filmed as part of the ninth series. It was entered by television presenter Suzi Perry, who was joined by fellow TV presenter Dallas Campbell on the show. The celebrities were mentored by Craig Danby throughout the competition process. After topping the table in the head-to-head stage, The Cat lost to Arena Cleaner in the Grand Final of Episode 1, to finish as the runner-up.

DesignEdit

"The idea of my robot is based on a cat - they look cute, but they're seriously vicious if you get on the wrong side of them!"
— Suzi Perry
The Cat

The Cat's wedge

The Cat disc

The Cat's disc

The Cat was an invertible two-wheeled robot decorated to look like a yellow cat, with a feline face painted on the robot's hardened wedge. The other side of the robot was armed with a destructive horizontal spinner, weighing 30kg and spinning at up to 1200rpm. Its armour consisted of 6mm HARDOX, and 3mm steel. The Cat was capable of causing great damage due to its extremely heavy and damaging weapon, but this also led to problems with the robot's drive, as it was not powerful enough to move effectively when carrying the weight of its spinner when up to speed. The Cat also suffered from its wheels being exposed, and unreliability issues.

The cat back arena

The Cat in the arena

Thecat arena

The Cat in battle

Although the TV show claimed that The Cat weighed 110kg, some roboteers have claimed that The Cat exceeded this weight significantly. Team Cat's mentor Craig Danby claimed that the disc alone weighed roughly 45kg, with roboteers estimating a rough weight for the robot at up to 140kg, although this has not been evidenced.

The TeamEdit

BOTS Celebs

Suzi Perry and Dallas Campbell (centre-right) in Battle of the Stars

The team were collectively known as Team Cat[1].

"I've waited a long time for this. Tech, tactics and titanium all rolled into one battleground – Robot Wars special, it should be such fun. I've designed the robot, now it's all down to gadget warfare and I can't wait to get into the arena to take on my opponents."
— Suzi Perry

Suzi Perry is a television presenter, most famously known for hosting MotoGP on the BBC over the last 13 years. This, and her history as a presenter of The Gadget Show, made her a good fit for roboteering. Perry captained Team Cat, and designed the robot's appearance.

Dallas Campbell worked with Perry as a fellow host of The Gadget Show. Outside of this, Campbell has worked on a variety of documentaries for the BBC, including Bang Goes the Theory and City in the Sky.

The Cat with team

Team Cat with their robot

Craig Danby is the captain of Team Danby. After first competing on Robot Wars with antweight Anto, Danby would later enter the heavyweight competition in Series 8 with Foxic, which reached the second round. Between battles, Danby would make repairs to The Cat to ensure that it is fit for battle.

The initial press release which confirmed Suzi Perry's involvement with Robot Wars suggested that she would be mentored by Suren Balendran of Team Supernova. However, Balendran could not travel to the venue in time[2], and his role was filled by Craig Danby. Balendran confirmed that he was not involved with the build process of The Cat.

As with all Battle of the Stars competitors, The Cat was built by Robo Challenge, producers of the show who had also built the House Robots.

Robot HistoryEdit

Battle of the StarsEdit

"The Cat's weapon is too dangerous to test outside the Robot Wars arena, so the first time they'll use it will be... well, in a couple of seconds, actually!"
Jonathan Pearce before The Cat's first battle

The Cat competed in Episode 1. In its first Head-to-Head battle, it fought the Brownlee Brothers and their robot JAR.

The Cat vs JAR

The Cat retreats as JAR throws itself into the air

It immediately spun round in an attempt to get its disc pointing forwards, but was pushed side-on by JAR, which attempted to use its hammer, but retracted its first blow and threw itself on its second.

"Down came the Brownlees' golden hammer, and The Cat was nearly dead."
Jonathan Pearce as The Cat is attacked by JAR

The Cat's disc hit the wall as JAR threw itself around again, the latter immobilising itself as The Cat backed away across the Floor Flipper to the centre of the arena. The Cat drove in circles across the arena floor, seemingly unable to drive in a straight line with its disc spinning, as JAR was counted out and carried around by Sir Killalot. With this, The Cat was awarded three points for a knock-out victory.

Next, The Cat fought Scott Mills and Chris Stark’s spinner, Arena Cleaner, with both robots jointly leading the league table at this point.

Arena cleaner vs the cat

The Cat slices Arena Cleaner's wheel

Arena cleaner vs the cat remains

The remnants of Arena Cleaner's wheel are scattered around the CPZ

The Cat slowly approached Arena Cleaner as the latter got its spinning blade up to speed, before turning round and deflecting Arena Cleaner away. Sparks flew as Arena Cleaner hit one of The Cat's wheels, and The Cat backed into a CPZ before spinning around. Its disc hit Arena Cleaner's blade and left-hand wheel in rapid succession, decimating the tyre and leaving Arena Cleaner immobilised on one side. The Cat hit Arena Cleaner's left wheel again, sending it sliding into the corner, and secured another knock-out victory and three points to take the lead in the league table standings.

"Two lives down, still got seven left!"
— Suzi Perry following the Head-to-Head against Arena Cleaner

The Cat had already safely qualified for the final, but still fought one more battle in the Head-to-Head stage, against scientist Dr. Maggie Aderin-Pocock and her robot Interstellar: MML.

Interstellar MML vs The Cat

The Cat is almost caught in Sir Killalot's claw

It turned around and slammed into Interstellar: MML's flipper, before spinning over the Flame Pit and mistakenly driving into Sir Killalot's CPZ. The Cat damaged Sir Killalot's claw with its disc, only to get trapped close to the wall by Sir Killalot and become immobilised.

"Well, were they too confident? They went into Sir Killalot’s territory, and they are out of this one."
— Jonathan Pearce as The Cat is counted out
Interstellar vs the cat

Interstellar: MML flips The Cat against the corner

Interstellar: MML proceeded to push The Cat into another CPZ after the count-out, and flipped it against the wall. The Cat sustained severe damage to its chassis around the disc, which caused it to seize and its drive belt to slip. Even so, The Cat's score of six points was still good enough for it to finish joint-first with Arena Cleaner in the league table, and secure a place in the Grand Final.

The Cat repairs

The incision made on The Cat to aid repairs

Before the Grand Final, the damage from the battle against Interstellar: MML was inspected further, with it being found that the disc itself was now unable to move due to the twisted weapon shaft. However, with only a small time frame available, the team were forced to improvise, so they created an incision above the drive belt and slammed it into place as much as possible as opposed to welding it.

Dallas Campbell: "Basically, we've used all The Cat's nine lives in one go."
Suzi Perry: "All of them. We're out of lives here."
— Dallas Campbell and Suzi Perry before the Grand Final

The Grand Final saw The Cat face Arena Cleaner for the second time, in a rematch of their Head-to-Head encounter.

Arena Cleaner vs The Cat

The Cat loses its wheel easily

Arena Cleaner vs Cat

The Cat takes further damage

The Cat turned round in an attempt to deflect Arena Cleaner's blade with its wedge, but Arena Cleaner hit The Cat's right-hand wheel, causing the tyre to disintegrate as it spun around and withstood another hit. The Cat spun helplessly in the middle of the arena as Arena Cleaner slashed through its other tyre, with its only movement coming from the gyroscopic forces of its disc. Arena Cleaner hit The Cat's wedge a few more times before dislodging its remaining tyre. This completely immobilised The Cat, which was counted out, picked up by Sir Killalot and carried towards the Flame Pit.

Sir Killalot vs The Cat

Sir Killalot holds The Cat over the flame pit

"Toasted cat! That's illegal, and you're going to go down for that!"
— Suzi Perry as The Cat is held over the Flame Pit by Sir Killalot

Sir Killalot held The Cat over the flames for a few seconds before spinning it around in his claw and throwing it into the wall. With this, The Cat finished as the runner-up in the first episode of Battle of the Stars.

Angela Scanlon: "It was a lot to even get back into the final, and a lot of damage to come back from after the last Head-to-Head."
Suzi Perry: "So much damage! And actually, we didn't think the spinner would work, and we were just happy to make the final."
— Suzi Perry after the Grand Final

ResultsEdit

THE CAT - RESULTS
Series 9
Battle of the Stars
Episode 1 Runner-up
Episode 1, Head-to-Heads vs. JAR Won via KO (3 points)
Episode 1, Head-to-Heads vs. Arena Cleaner Won via KO (3 points)
Episode 1, Head-to-Heads vs. Interstellar: MML Lost via KO (0 points)
Episode 1, Grand Final vs. Arena Cleaner Lost

Wins/LossesEdit

  • Wins: 2
  • Losses: 2

Series RecordEdit

Main Series The Cat Series Record
The First Wars Did not enter
The Second Wars Featherweight Championship with Deadline
The Third Wars Super Heavyweight Championship with Toxin (event cancelled)
The Fourth Wars Failed to qualify with Vindicare
The Fifth Wars Failed to qualify with TX-108
The Sixth Wars Failed to qualify with TX-108
The Seventh Wars Featherweight Championship with Gi-Ant-O
Failed to qualify with TX-108 and Tanto
Series 8 Entered with Foxic
Series 9 Battle of the Stars, Runner-up
Entered with Foxic
Series 10 Entered with Apex
Not selected with Foxic
Robot Wars Extreme Appearances
Series 1 Entered with Anto
Entered with TX-108 (battle unaired)
Series 2 Entered with Gi-Ant-O

NOTE: This series record reflects the performance of mentor Craig Danby

TriviaEdit

  • Suren Balendran's late withdrawal as a mentor of Team Cat was not the first time that Team Supernova had declined a position in an episode of Robot Wars, as the team had previously turned down places in Robot Wars Extreme: Series 2, and the Seventh Wars All-Stars.

ReferencesEdit

  1. https://twitter.com/suziperry/status/814213542098374660
  2. https://www.facebook.com/supernovarobotwars/posts/959368214196374

External LinksEdit

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