DERBY, Kan. (KSNW) — On Saturday, hundreds of middle and high schoolers competed in the Robo Derby Challenge at Derby North Middle School.

This is one of the largest robotics competitions in Kansas.

It attracts students from the Sunflower State, but also Nebraska and Missouri.

“Our kids started in September, and it’s a full-year event,” said David Brown, Derby Middle School robotics coach and teacher.

Derby students start by designing their robots and planning for how they have to compete.

“We have to identify what the actual game is every single year. It is a new one so this year we are playing frisbee golf with robots,” said Brown.

The students spend months getting their bots ready for competition.

“It takes tons of trial and error to make sure that you get the build that you are satisfied with,” said Nathan Kymer, Derby High School junior.

“You have to screw things in and there are different gears and ratios that you have to deal with and then there is programming it,” said Ebin Bonghi, Derby High School senior.

There are multiple awards in the end, but for these students, it’s not just about the robots.

“If I’m wanting to go into aerospace, like maybe Textron or something, I think it will help me with the hands-on and the teamwork cause engineers have to come together and come up with ideas. They can’t just be able to work together,” said Bonghi.

The teams who won the Tournament Champion and Excellence awards will go on to compete in state.

That will be held in March at the Textron Aviation Activity Center.