[CQ-Contest] Absurd Rule in NAQP

Kevan Nason knason00 at gmail.com
Sun Jan 17 13:29:49 EST 2016

Although I've been talking up assisted operation to our local contest
group, I have to agree with Kelly, Steve and others on this one Pete. I'm
thinking maybe your great work with the RBN and N1MM (with all of its
assisted doo-dads) has put you too far out of touch with the
traditionalists. They have "rights" too. "Rights" which have been eroded by
reclassification's in other contests.

- There are plenty of contests out there where we assisted ops can play.
Not everyone wants to be assisted though. I can think of a couple reasons
why not to have an assisted NAQP category. The one I'll mention would
probably fit that "unintended consequences" thing. By removing the
'penalty' as you call it for assisted ops it just shifts it to the
unassisted op who now has to compete with more single ops spot generated
pile-ups. Lets keep the rules as is and give those who want to compete in
an unassisted event at least one "big" contest format they like. (Big in NA
- I will also make the argument that if some view this as a lost training
opportunity for practicing spotting and moving skills then they don't
really view the NAQP as being worthy of its own place in the scheme of
things. If that is the case then by all means, let the Single Op Assisted
have their training time -- just don't enter a score. Or submit a score in
a category where using assistance from other ops is already acceptable --
Multi-Two. If It isn't a big deal contest to them then a NAQP plaque or
certificate on the wall shouldn't mean much. Let someone else have a
chance. As a newbie contester I naively used to think I actually had a shot
at winning the NAQP. I didn't of course, but I didn't realize that at the
time. Because I had a chance it drove me to get better and move on to other
things. Like assisted operating in the international CQ and ARRL contests.

Besides fairness to those who hate assistance, there is a lot to be said
for the skills learned while operating a radio without the cluster. Judging
by my Multi and Field Day experiences I think having first developed
unassisted contesting skills gives me an edge over many a contester who has
only done assisted operating. Not always, but the unassisted competitor is
often "hungrier" to try and figure out how to at least compete with
assisted ops.  You sharpen your traditional radio skills and spend more
time actually learning why smart people like N4ZR and N1MM put so much work
into weird seemingly esoteric things in N1MM. Things that really do help
the unassisted op get a better score.

Why didn't you suggest removing the 10 minute band change rule?  That would
seem to be the rationale for why you thought reclassification of a Single
Op using Assistance to Multi-Two was unfair. I don't recommend doing that
either for some of the same reasons as above, but it would seem to be the
thing to pursue based on what I think you are mainly objecting to.


On Sun, Jan 17, 2016 at 9:24 AM, Steve London <n2icarrl at gmail.com> wrote:

> "counter-productive anachronism?"
> Hardly !  Activity in the NAQP increases every year.
> 73,
> Steve, N2IC
> On 01/16/2016 02:24 PM, Pete Smith N4ZR wrote:
>> NAQP does not allow use of spotting assistance on any mode, and
>> single-ops using assistance are reclassified as Multi-two.  Then,
>> *because they areMulti-Two, they are required to adhere by the 10-minute
>> band change rule*.  When I asked one of the organizers, he first said
>> that they had never thought about it, but after a couple of
>> back-and-forths, he affirmed that is indeed how it works.
>> Why should we care?  First of all, because penalizing assisted single-op
>> participants in this way is a classic example of unintended
>> consequences.  The band change rule was intended to prevent elaborate
>> octopus arrangments competing with genuine two transmitter multis, not
>> to limit single-op band changes.  It prevents assisted entrants from
>> participating in one of the most fun aspects of NAQP, moving stations
>> (or being moved)  to maximize the distribution of rare mults.  For
>> people who operate assisted in other contests, it prevents them from
>> practicing high-rate assisted search-and-pounce skills unless they are
>> willing to accept a heavy handicapso far as NAQP competition is concerned.
>> It's hard for me to understand why NAQP would cling to this antiquated
>> situation.  The other three contests reclassifying assisted single-op as
>> multi-op were ARRL 10, ARRL 160, andIARU HF.  All three have now adopted
>> Single Op Unlimited as a legitimate competitive class. When will NAQP
>> get rid of this counter-productive anachronism?
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