[CQ-Contest] Maximum Time Limit for S/O

Steve London n2icarrl at gmail.com
Wed Feb 21 10:14:48 EST 2007

A few points that I haven't seen made -

Some readers have made the assumption that operating more hours means your score 
will always be higher. That is not necessarily true. Operating 48 hours may very 
well NOT maximize your score. As a seriously competitive USA operator in DX 
contests, I have often made the decision to take time off during slow rates on 
Saturday night, so that I can be more alert and efficient during the higher rate 
European runs on Sunday morning. Was it the right decision ?  Who can tell ? 
It's just another of the many strategic decisions that a competitive operator 
must make during the course of a 48 hour contest. I'm sure some competitors do 
their best going 48 hours, while others actually do better operating 45, 42, 39 
or even fewer hours. Thus, focusing on the number and percentage of operators 
who report going the full 48 hours is not a useful metric for arguing for a 
rules change.

The argument that the number of hours should be reduced for health reasons is 
simply a red herring (non-USA/G readers, see 
http://www.m-w.com/cgi-bin/dictionary?book=Dictionary&va=red+herring ). How many 
of us still smoke, are a little overweight, ride motorcycles, eat 
fatty/salty/sugary foods, climb towers without industry-approved 
equipment/procedures ?  I bet every one of us engages in some pleasureable 
activities that may not be optimal for our health. Operating many hours in a 
contest is just another one to add to the list.

Steve, N2IC

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