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2005 Remembrance Day Contest - Introduced by Chris Edmondson, VK4AA

Date : 14 / 06 / 2005
Author : Chris Edmondson - VK4AA

This article presents the formal rules for the 2005 Remembrance Day Contest, which appear in the contest section of this website and in the AR magazine for July..

Along with a new Contest Manager for this year come new rules and, importantly, a new way of determining the overall winner.

The RD Contest is an important event on the Australian amateur calendar, with heavy participation by individual operators and serious competition between states.

But we felt that some of the spark was dimming a little, and this year's changes are aimed at restoring the drive and renewing the enthusiasm in the grand old lady. We specifically wanted to strengthen the RD without confusion, and hope the new rules will help the RD retain its rightful place as the premier Australian contest event.

The Remembrance Day Contest for 2005 will be held on August 13-14 2005, for 24 hours commencing 0800 UTC on the Saturday evening.

Firstly, in essence, what won't change is the spirit of the thing. We haven't meddled with the basics which make the RD so very special. The winning state will be the one which stands head and shoulders over the rest. Those things won't ever change. Other things will.

Our first presents are to HF operators, who can now claim double points for all contacts in excess of 1000km on any HF band. Contacts with any station within VK8, VK9 and VK zero will also earn double points for both sides of each contact. Logs for VK5 and VK8 will from 2005 be considered as coming from different states.

Logs should still show sequential numbers starting at zero, with bonus points tallied at the end of the contest and added to the claimed score.

SSB and CW will continue to be considered separate modes on HF, and from this year, subject to licence privileges, any operator who works stations using 10 metres FM above 29MHz will also have the opportunity to immediately re-log the same station using SSB or CW below 29 MHz.

On VHF, we'll forge ahead by going back to the days when VHF operators could work a station on FM and immediately rework them on SSB or CW, or, indeed, both. This provision was inadvertently changed several years ago when the then manager moved to ban completely automated exchanges between packet stations.

The effect it had, other than to remove the packet robots, of course, was to almost totally eradicate CW and SSB contest operation on the VHF and higher bands in one fell swoop. This year we redress the situation.

From 2005, your VHF log can include stations worked on CW, FM or SSB. You do not need to separate the logs according to mode, nor do you need to apply contact numbers according to mode. However, you will continue to need separate logs for HF and VHF categories, due to the different rules applying to the two categories.

Many operators concentrate exclusively on VHF and higher band operation, and many of them will have seen that stations which might be very strong on six or two metres could be substantially weaker on 70cm, and probably all but inaudible on higher bands. From 2005 we seek to address this imbalance by offering reward-based incentives for putting the work into higher band operation. Bonus points will be offered for both long distance contacts and higher band contacts.

All contacts on bands above 70cm will attract double points, irrespective of and in addition to any other incentives already offered. They join 160 metre band HF operators who have enjoyed double points for some years, as have all CW operators.

From this year onward, HF operators using either 10 or 160 metres will be able to work stations within their own state boundaries.

We did consider also allowing WARC band operation, but decided to restrict HF operation to the 160, 80, 40, 20, 15 and 10 metre bands only.

When polled for comment on a recent VK1WIA broadcast, a number of people asked about multiple contacts. Until now, dupes were not allowed on HF but were allowed on VHF after only two hours. The VHF arrangements will not change this year. However, from 2005, repeat HF contacts will be allowed after four hours. This will encourage both more and longer operation, and real participation in the fun.

What's more, there's a special time for all operators still on the air between 1am and 6am local time. All points scored during those wee hours will be doubled. If you work a station whose time zone means they are outside the 1am to 6am point, only your points will be doubled. Although the contest runs during UTC times, the special "night owl" loading is determined strictly by your time zone.

Until the 1970s ushered in substantial VHF operations, a very convoluted point-scoring system was in place for HF, in which more points were allocated for contacts spanning multiple call areas than ones to neighbouring states. Even with computer technology, scoring such a thing could be a time-consuming process indeed, and very confusing for entrants.

However, it does seems appropriate to offer modest bonuses for better distances covered. From 2005 any HF contact in excess of 1000 km will earn double points, as will any VHF or higher contact which exceeds 100 km.

For scoring purposes, too, determining the overall winner is a different affair this year. The RD has always been state against state, but determining the winner was a confusing process involving overall "improvement factors". From 2005 on, who wins is a simple question of how many people take part from each state and actually submit logs. More than ever before, then, for your state to win, submitting your log is vital.

That's a basic summary of the changes. Every one of them is designed to boost your scores without making the scoring too messy for either the competitor or the manager. Good luck, and good contesting!



 

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