[CQ-Contest] How about ditching ARRL DX top 10 completely?

Scott R. w4pa at yahoo.com
Thu Apr 7 09:10:05 EDT 2005

K6XX, I know you meant the below sarcastically, but the suggestion
within actually carries quite a bit of merit.  Indeed, why not jettison
the top 10 boxes?  They're already kind of non-relevant because of the
basic geographic inequalities inherent to DX contesting.  By doing all
results as Divisional only, this also would eliminate revamping SSB
rules to make VY2's frequency availability vs. W1 irrelevant, as VY2
and Connecticut are not in the same ARRL Division.  

Let's face it, New England and Texas and wherever are not competing on
a level playing field in a DX contest where proximity to Europe is the
determining factor in who "wins".  In lieu of rule changes to make the
contest scoring based on the distance of contacts (which REALLY would
help even out contest scoring - we have sophisticated computers and
software, how hard could it be?), why not have the reporting done is a
fashion so that the regional results are what counts and the overall
score totals don't make any difference?  

The capability to create a top 10 box already exists within the ARRL
scores database on the website.  The people who care passionately about
who makes the top 10 are generally those competing for it, so they'll
know anyway.  KQ2M made a good point in an earlier post - DL's compete
with DL's and G's with G's, so why should VY2/VE1 compete with W1 and
W2 in the scoring boxes?  No top 10's or "overall winner" would
elegantly solve that problem by making all score reporting regional
only.  Those that just have to know who "won" or what the top 10 was
can easily find that data from the web database. 

The "top 10 boxes" could then consist of the divisional winner from
each area of the United States rather than merely the top 10 posted
score totals in each category.  Does this make a lot more sense than
just the raw score totals for High Power, Low Power, et cetera and
having a "winner"?

Maybe we've been pushed into a paradigm shift for score reporting for
this contest.  Since I'm currently writing the ARRL DX CW summary
article, I'll have to give this quite a bit of thought.  And to think,
all we did was start with a discussion of Canadian run frequencies, and
now possibly we're on the verge of a whole new chapter in the way score
reporting is done.

As KQ2M wrote on the reflector on April 3:  "I am saying that, IMO
opinion, it is high-time to separate the VE's from the W's for scoring
and awards purposes until such time as we have reasonably similar
frequencies to operate on.  Plus, WE ARE SEPARATE COUNTRIES! and should
be treated as such."

Careful what you ask for.  You just might get it.

Scott W4PA

> The solution: eliminate all national (US/VE) awards. Recognize the
> winners in
> each ARRL Division and Section (including second, third, etc., places
> as
> appropriate). Do not emphasize the top national score, since it is
> only relevant
> regionally. (This does not mean eliminating national awards for DX,
> of course).
> Think of it: those poor W1s need no longer suffer ignominious defeat
> at the
> hands of those horrid (fill in the blank: VY2s?). The highest scoring
> W1 gets
> the same certificate as the top VY2. Problem solved.
> Bonus: us "third rate lids west of 90 degrees W longitude" likewise
> will now
> compete against similarly handicapped operators, with the regional
> high scorer
> receiving appropriate recognition. The increasingly unequal
> geographic/demographic effect is thus normalized. Elegantly simple!

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