P40L-P49Y Contest Summary Information

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Another hoot of a time this weekend, here in the legendary contest cottage developed by AI6V in the 90's.  Carl and his wife Sue, AI6YL, are visiting Emily, P43E, and we will be reminiscing old times over dinner tonight.  It was certainly a thrill on Saturday evening when I surpassed the M2 world record set by Carl, Jacky (P43P) and Paolo (I2UIY) in the 2000 RTTY WPX.  RTTY contesting has come a long way in those seven years, most significantly in the rapidly increasing number of call signs I work in each contest.  I had 1558 unique call signs in my RTTY Round-Up log and I'm sure there are more in this one.

My private stretch goal for this outing was 3200 Qs, 14K points, 725 prefixes in order to break the 10M point level.  Don't know if that will hold up after Paolo applies his magic log-checking software, but it was a blast anyway.  The plan was to work the low bands (go where the points are) as much as possible.  I consider WPX a low-band contest with the 10/15/20 there to fill in the rest of the 30 hour operating time.

Friday night I took my first break at 0849 when the rate on 40/80 had dropped to about 60/hour.  That's equal to 120/hour on the high bands, and I hoped I could keep above that during the day.  I started up again at 1256 Saturday morning and ran 15/20 until 2049 when I took a second break for an hour.  The time was spend with a refreshing shower and a bit of food, plus some snack preparation to get me through the second night.  I started back up, but on 20/40 at 2153 and moved from 20 to 80 when the 20 started to buckle.  I figured the activity would be less the second night and that I would probably take another break around 6Z, but wonderfully, the rate actually increased as sun rose across Europe and then didn't start to close down until 8z.  I stopped at 0814 and got some rest before making breakfast and starting up again on 15/20 at 1519 Sunday morning.  I ran on both rigs until my 30 hours expired at 1812.

I thought it might be interesting to use packet and I did pipe it into my three logging computers.  But, the run rate on each radio never dropped enough to bother with it.  I would glance over at the band map where new mults and new band-stations were color-coded, lusting after those call signs.  But most of them called me anyway by the end of my 30 hours.  And, certainly, chasing mults via packet didn't make any sense because a mult is equivalent to only four QSOs in this log ... hardly enough time to even do a Packet pounce without losing ground, and maybe even my run frequency.

A huge thanks to all the ops getting in these RTTY contests, especially the casual ops, and then moving through the bands with me.  It was fun to give my other radio frequency and then see the same call sign displayed in the print window on both displays at the same time.  A couple QSYers were so fast, they snagged my next serial number on the second band.  Then there were a few QSOs during my last half-hour when one computer lost its network connection and the serial numbers stopped being interleaved.  Those QSYers were probably wondering what was going on when the arrived at the second QSO and got the same or an even lower number.  But, as we say, "log what you copy" and everything will be fine.

When's the next RTTY contest?


Ed - P49X

P.S.  I'll run stats on the plane ride home.  Figured it was more important to get this report on 3830 in a timely manner.