[CQ-Contest] Leveling the Playing Field

W7VJ w7vj at millerisar.com
Thu Jun 23 19:15:03 PDT 2011

Two observations:

1) Western PA and W5 (mentioned in KU8E's discussion about wins outside of
the east coast), while geographically correct, does not take into account
those of us in the extremities of the west coast - we simply have NO chance
of winning any thing beyond zone 3 in the DX contests (yes, SS and perhaps
WPX notwithstanding); and

2) The "level the playing field" while truly impossible in radiosporting,
has conceptual appeal because this is one of the few endeavors where the
contestants are literally world wide, unlike track and field, F1 or other
motor sports, cycling, and competitive sailing.  

I have always looked at the sailing analogy as having parallels with
radiosporting.  One could argue that if one applied a sail race analogy to
radiosporting, from my perspective this would be like competing on time and
distance with the competitors also distributed world wide.  Some places have
better winds, currents, etc., and would allow for better times. 

The distance formula may have appeal because it would indeed offer some form
of making a more relative comparison between disparate parts of the world,
propagation and demographics.  Yet for that matter, in the DX contests,
unless we are at the peak of the cycle, we are virtually guaranteed to be
well behind southern W6.  Not sure that even regional differences could be

Not advocating change accordingly, but the discussion is warranted. From
past contesting endeavors, it is no fun to watch your hourly rate hover
around 10 an hour for hours on end in the WW contests, while the east coast
is non-stop rate - at least by relative comparison, and have all the
attention go to the east coast (will admit that this has changed over time).
I laughed once at K1AR's CQ Magazine comment about enjoying contesting at
the bottom of the cycle when he said he worked over 3,500 QSOs in a WW ...
something we could only dream to aspire to at the top of the cycle.


More information about the CQ-Contest mailing list