Proposed VHF+ Contest Rules

Tom Mayo, N1MU

2004-02-25

[Updated 2006-11-08]

 

Introduction

This contest scoring system is goal-based.  This system was developed from the ground up. The underlying goals of VHF+ contesting were examined and a fresh approach to rewarding these goals was contemplated. It takes the overall goals of VHF+ contesting and maps them to Goal Scores that are used to determine where entrants place in the contest.  Awards are granted for the top scoring entrants for each Goal.

 

This scoring system discourages grid circling and captive rovers because of two key concepts:

 

  1. The geographical coverage goal encourages working as many unique grid-to-grid combinations for each band as possible. Lets say you have a pack of rovers traveling together. Once pack member A has worked pack member B in given grid, working a second pack member C in the same grid does nothing for As coverage score.
  2. The camaraderie goal encourages working different stations. Once huge multi-op A has worked rover B, working him again on the same band in another location does nothing for As camaraderie score.

 

Yes, there can be obvious winners for each goal, but entrants would strive for a clean sweep, i.e. winning at each scoring goal.

 

Goals

The Goals of each entrant in the contest are to:

 

Goal ID

Description

2004.1

To generate activity on 50 MHz and up to maintain an amateur presence on these precious bands.  More value will be assigned to contacts on bands in most need of activity.

2004.2

To foster technology development.  More value will be assigned to contacts that exercise technology advances.

2004.3

To exhibit far-reaching geographical coverage.  More value will be assigned to contacts that increase number of unique grid to grid combinations worked.

2004.4

To foster camaraderie amongst operators.  More value will be assigned to contacts that expand the number of different stations worked.

 

Entry Categories

Entries in the contest must declare one of the following categories at the time of entry submission.

 

Category

Number of Ops

Bands

Power

Unlimited Multi-Op

Any

Any

Any legal

Limited Multi-Op

Any

Exactly Five

Any legal

Single-Op, QRP

One (no help)

Any

<200W 50/144

<100W 222/432

<10W 903-up

Single-Op, High Power

One (no help)

Any

Any legal

Single-Op, Portable

One (no help)

Any

<10W on all bands

Rover

One or Two (total)

Any

Any legal

 


Scoring

As mentioned above, entrants strive to get high scores toward the Goals of the contest.  Each QSO is assigned a value for each Goal.  To determine the total score for each Goal, the Goal Values for each QSO are summed.

 

Cumulative Goal Scores

 

Goal

Total Score

Activity

Sum the Band Activity Values for each contact.

Technology

Sum the Technology Value for each contact.

Coverage

Sum the Coverage Value for each contact.

Camaraderie

Sum the Camaraderie Value for each contact.

 

A winner is declared for each combination of Entry Category and Total Goal Score for each ARRL section or Canadian Province, for example:

 

WNY Section

Activity Winner

Activity Scores

Tech Winner

Tech Scores

Coverage Winner

Coverage Scores

Camaraderie Winner

Camaraderie Scores

Unlimited

Multi

W2FU

Scores

W2FU

Scores

W2FU

Scores

W2FU

Scores

Limited

Multi

N2WK

Scores

N2WK

Scores

N2WK

Scores

N2WK

Scores

Single-Op,

QRP

N2JAC

Scores

W2ABC

Scores

W2ABC

Scores

W2ABC

Scores

Single-Op,

High

K2AXX

Scores

K2AXX

Scores

WB2QMY

Scores

KE2MK

Scores

Single-Op,

Port

W2AB

Scores

N2EMF

Scores

W2EMI

Scores

K2AD

Scores

Rover

 

N1MU

Scores

N2JMH

Scores

N1MU

Scores

N2JMH

Scores

 

This is what the results would look like when published. There is some simple psychology involved here. Clean sweeps are encouraged because the sweepers callsign appears in bold across the entire row for the entry category, W2FU in the example above. Also, participation is encouraged because there is the potential for more callsigns to appear in print and new entrants are denoted with underlines, KE2MK in the example.


Goal Values

The following tables list the Goal Value of each QSO.

 

2004.1 Activity Values

Band

Activity Value

50

2

144

1

222

4

432

2

903

4

1.2

3

2.3

4

3.4

3

5.7

4

10

3

24

3

47

3

75 and up

3

 

2004.2 Technology Values

Band

CW Value

PH Value

FM Value

RY Value

50

1

1

1

1

144

1

1

1

1

222

2

2

1

1

432

1

2

1

1

903

3

4

2

2

1.2

2

3

1

2

2.3

3

4

2

3

3.4

3

4

3

3

5.7

4

5

4

5

10

4

5

3

5

24

5

5

5

5

47

5

5

5

5

75 and up

6

6

6

6

 


2004.3 Coverage Values

New Grid/Grid Combination per band?

Coverage Value

Yes

1

No

0

 

2004.4 Camaraderie Values

New Station per Band?

Camaraderie Value

Yes

1

No

0


Scoring Example:

 

QSO

Band

Mode

Call

Sent

Recd

Acti-vity Value

Tech-nology Value

Cover-age Value

Cama-raderie Value

1

144

FM

W1AA

FN13

FN13

1

1

1

1

2

50

CW

W1AA

FN13

FN13

2

1

1

1

3

222

CW

W1AA

FN12

FN13

3

2

1

1

4

144

RY

W1AB

FN12

FN12

1

1

1

1

5

144

RY

W1AC

FN12

FN13

1

1

1

1

6

144

RY

W1AD

FN12

FN13

1

1

0

1

7

144

FM

W1AA

FN12

FN13

1

1

0

0

Goal Score Totals

10

8

5

6

 

QSO 1 scores 1 (lowest) for Activity Value because it is on 144 MHz, a more commonly utilized band.  In contrast, QSO 3 scores 3 (higher) because it is on 222 MHz, a band that needs more activity.

 

QSO 1 scores 1 (lowest) for Technology Value because 144 MHz FM is a band/mode combination requiring little technology advancement.  Radios with this combination are very commonly purchased ready to use.  On the other hand, QSO 3 scores 2 (higher) because fewer radios are available with this band and mode off the shelf, and typically some homebrewing is required.  Digital modes on higher microwave bands are valued the most because of the technical challenges involved in running them on those bands.

 

QSO 5 scores 1 for Coverage Value because it represents a new grid to grid contact on 144 MHz, FN12 to FN13.  QSO 6 does not score a Coverage Value because this combination is not new.  QSO 5 already covered this combination.

 

QSO 1 scores 1 for Camaraderie Value because it represents a new call worked on 144 MHz.  QSO 6 does not score a Camaraderie Value because W1AA was already worked on 144 MHz in QSO 1.

 


Conclusion

This contest scoring system achieves several ends.

  1. Rover Grid Circling and Captive Rovering are now as non-productive as most contesters want them to be due to the scoring for the Camaraderie Goal.
  2. Because there are four Goals per Entry Category, four winners for each Category are declared, giving entrants the option of which Goal to focus on.
  3. Entrants who wish to simply buy a radio and win an award can disregard the technology Goal and concentrate on the other Goals.
  4. Entrants who are gunning to be top dog in the contest can go for a clean sweep of all four Goals.
  5. The system is flexible.  Additional Goals or modifications of existing Goals can be added instead of replacing previous goals.  This way entrants can be judged on whichever goals they please.

 

Comments

Please share your comments with me:  tmayo1 at rochester dot rr dot com.