[CQ-Contest] Re: SO2R

Doug Smith W9WI w9wi at w9wi.com
Sun Jan 26 10:21:33 EST 2003

> From: "Kelly Taylor" <ve4xt at mb.sympatico.ca>
> Of course it represents an advantage. There would be no reason to do it
> otherwise. But so does every decision we make to improve our station. If we
> upgrade from RG-213 to LMR 400, it's an advantage over those still using RG
> 213. If we add 20 feet to our 80 foot tower, it represents an advantage over

We do already recognize separate categories for those who choose not to take
certain steps to upgrade their stations.  

Operators choose not to use their amplifier, and are recognized for winning
the "low-power" category.  Or, they even specifically adjust their radio for
reduced power and enter as "QRP".  In many contests, operators who choose
not to be competitive on all six bands can be recognized as single-band

Entrants who aren't willing to build a fully effective multi/multi station
are handicapped into the multi-single category.  Those who aren't willing to
even round up enough operators for a multi-single can win an award as

Those who aren't willing to move to Puerto Rico where you're more likely to
win Sweepstakes find themselves recognized for winning the Delta Division,
or even only the Tennessee Section.  

If only the maximum effort is to be recognized with awards, then contests
should only have one category.  High power, multi-multi, worldwide.  Away
with QRP.  Away with section awards.  Away with the distinction between
single-op and multi-multi.  All of it is recognizing someone who isn't
willing to go all the way to a maximum effort.
(please don't take me literally!)
My point is that we already have categories for less-than-maximum
facilities, and the vast majority of us fully support those categories.  It
is not ridiculous to consider creating new categories or modifying the ones
we have.
Which does not mean I think SO2R should be segregated or banned.  

Personally, I think we have a great enough *quantity* of categories, but
maybe we need to rethink how some of those categories are defined.

An increasing proportion of amateurs live in places where 80-foot towers and
tribanders (let alone multiple towers and monobanders) are impossible. 
There's a huge difference between KJ4XYZ staying home & running barefoot to
a stealth longwire, and KJ4XYZ going to W0AIH & leaving the amplifier turned
off.  Yet both entries would be in the same category.

Maybe instead of creating a SO2R category, we need to change the "low-power"
category to "restricted"?  For example, maybe "no more than 150 watts and
only one antenna"?  (which would, of course, also preclude SO2R)
Doug Smith W9WI
Pleasant View (Nashville), TN EM66

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