[CQ-Contest] Sprint Multipliers

W2RU - Bud Hippisley W2RU at frontiernet.net
Wed Feb 16 12:38:23 EST 2005

>*** Bud, W2RU had written:
>> And just think how much better it would be to have ARRL Sections for the USA multipliers....

Then, at 04:00 2005-02-16, Eric Hilding, K6VVA wrote:

>IMHO, this would make it more like SS.  Judging from the comments I've read, folks have already complained about the absence of existing State/Province mults being QRV.  I think expanding things to an ARRL Section list would compound the existing problem.

I thought I had read at one time that the Sprints were intended to help build contesting skills.  Copying a non-obvious exchange (such as a person's name) was specifically cited as good training for copying the CK in the SS exchange.  Similarly, wouldn't practice at listening for and copying section abbreviations be desirable training/practice for the SS?

Contrary to Rick's opinion, I believe "expanding things to an ARRL Section list" would _increase_ participation in the Sprints (and in the NAQP if they were to make the same change).  I, for one, would find far more incentive to get into either contest than I currently do, and I continue to believe that for many of us it's far more fun for both the "chased" and the "chasers" to play with nine California section multipliers (ditto NY, Fla, TX, WA, etc.) than one state multiplier.   

A general comment:  As I told K5TR in a private e-mail a few weeks ago, the Sprints are, in principle, a great idea (frequent 4 hour contests for us busy folks to check out antennas and station upgrades and build operator skills between the major contests), but the continuing lack of participation alluded to by Rick tells me that there's some structural problems with the Sprints that are limiting their popularity.   For me, it's a combination of factors, including the use of states as multipliers instead of sections, a 3-band format and start time that makes for dead bands for us northerners much of the sunspot cycle, and a crazy QSY rule that has nothing to do with "real" contests -- I hardly ever look at my frequency readout while doing S&P in a real contest, so being artificially forced to figure out whether I've moved 1 kHz or 5 kHz between QSOs is sheer idiocy, IMHO.

Bud, W2RU   

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