At least a few people besides me saw Tack's (JE1CKA) posting the other day
and decided to take him up on the JIDX challenge. Going into it, this had
all the appearance of a gentleman's weekend contest where, for once, we
California contesters would have the advantage over the east coast. (That
doesn't happen often, so it seems almost obligatory to take advantage of the
As it turned out, though, this one was painfully slow. Where were all the
JA ops??? This contest was sponsored by Five-Nine magazine, certainly a
big-time rag in JA, so I would have thought there would be a great turnout
for this contest. I even went to the trouble of lining up a station with a
good antenna and clear shot over salt water toward Japan. With expectations
of endless runs of JA's, I was there at the opening bell with everything
tuned just so and ready to service the screaming hoards of JA ops. Right.
All 227 of them. At least, that's what my log showed, and I was on pretty
much full-time. Pretty grim, huh?
Admittedly, conditions were poor, at least on the first day. I spent a lot
of time on 15 and only got 3 contacts to show for the effort. 10 was a
complete bust. But 20 wasn't so bad that people should have stayed away in
droves. There were plenty of JA stations who were S9+++ here in CA during
the daylight hours, 20 stayed open to Japan until after 10 p.m. local time,
and I have quite a few guys in the log who were signing /QRP. Perhaps the
problem was a lack of publicity? (Would T-shirts/playing cards/letter
openers have brought more ops out of the background? I dunno, but Im sure
W6OAT would be willing to consult on this if approached in the right way.)
Congratulations to JA1YXP, as loud as always. Those guys were just pounding
in here all weekend. If I were making bets on the single op, I would have a
hard time deciding whether to put my money on Aki, JA5DQH, or on Yoshi,
JH4NMT. Both of them were very loud and worked hard at this all weekend.
Besides, they're both superb operators who take a back seat to nobody. I
guess the thing to do would be to buy a place ticket on each of them. But
where was JE1JKL? I never heard Saty all weekend, unless he was there in
disguise as part of a multi-op group. And what about Tack, JE1CKA? I never
heard him on either. Yoshi's WRTC partner, JE3MAS, is holed up on Jamaica
right now, so he had a good excuse. But what about these other guys???
Anyway, thanks and congratulations to all the JA ops who did get on this
weekend. It was a real pleasure to participate in an event where courtesy
and politeness were the watchword of everybody in the contest.
For those who might have missed the fine print in Tack's announcement, Bear,
JA7RHJ, has offered to pick up the tab on the plane ticket for the U.S.
winner to fly to Japan to pick up his plaque for the phone contest. Yeah,
that's right. If you want to go for that one, you have to give up CW
sweepstakes in order to operate a phone contest. What a price to pay!
73 de N6NT
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