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Contest Branch Blog
Certificates for the 2009 ARRL November Sweepstakes were mailed yesterday. Sweepstakes plaques are being processed and will be shipped beginning the week of October 25.
Certificates for the 2009 ARRL September VHF QSO Party are being processed today and will be shipped either later today or Monday, October 25.
2009 EME, 10 Meter and 160 Meter contest certificates will be processed in the coming weeks.
For a status update on ARRL contest awards, processing, visit the Plaques and Certificates page.
Look for the "Contest Awards Processing Status" link near the middle of the page.
Expanded results for the 2010 ARRL DX Phone Contest are now online. You can view them here.
I have received several emails concerning coordination of QSO schedules before and during ARRL contests above 50 MHz.
While making skeds before a VHF+ contest is permitted, I remind VHF+ contesters of General Rule 3.10, which states:
"3.10. The use of non-Amateur Radio means of communication (for example, Internet or telephone) to solicit a contact (or contacts) during the contest period is not permitted."
View the General Rules for All ARRL Contests.
Once the contest starts, you may not use non-Amateur means of communication to make a sked with a station.
Evidence of stations breaking this rule may be forwarded to the ARRL Awards Committee, which may lead to an entrant being penalized or disqualified from the competition.
To reiterate: Don't use the phone or the internet to solicit or coordinate QSOs once the contest has started; that is a no-no.
After much delay, I am finally able to get something resembling a blog back on the Contest Branch area of arrl.org. There currently isn't a way to subscribe to it yet, so the best I can suggest for now is to add it to your Favorites bar when you're signed in and check back frquently.
What's new: Lots of things, actually! In the contest awards world, 2009 IARU certificates are being processed and should go out the door shortly. After that, the 2009 August UHF certificates will be next. For an update on what awards are being processed here at the Contest Branch, you can visit the Plaques and Certificates page.
In the HF contesting world, the Rookie Roundup is less than 2 weeks away., on Sunday, August 15. We'll be doing another SSB event, with CW in December and RTTY in August 2011. We've moved the Rookie Roundup Blog back to the ARRL site again, and we've also set up a Rookie Roundup Online Score Summary Form to report your score, regardless of the method you use to log the contest. All entrants must use the RR score summary form to officially enter. The dealine to submit your score has also been increased to 72 hours. Check the RR blog for more updates and get ready to Rumble!
November Sweepstakes will be here before you know it. If you're looking for something fun to do this year, consider seeing if you can be a part of your alma mater's SS effort. The Programs and Services Committee eased the restrictions on the School Club category in SS, allowing alumni to operate as part of the club's effort. This was intended to be a training ground for current club members by the alumni; it is NOT intended to be a free pass for alumni to operate their school's club station with little or no involvement of the current student body.
In case you haven't heard, big changes to the ARRL 10 Meter Contest begin this December, with the addition of 32 Mexican states as additional multipliers. The DXXE has provided a map of the Mexican states in PDF format for free download. It also lists the relative rarity of each state. Look for a lot of activity from XE-land this year.
In the VHF world, the Programs and Services Committee recently voted to change the definition of the use of lasers for contest QSOs. These rules are in effect beginning with the 2010 August UHF Contest, happening this weekend. You can read the complete definition in Rule 1.12 in the General Rules For All ARRL Contests Above 50 MHz.
That's about all I have for now. I hope everybody's had a good summer and is getting ready for the fall HF contest season. I hope to work you on the bands soon. 73!
Sean Kutzko, KX9X