12/8/2014 – W9SMC SMC Team MidCentral found itself in Third Place at the end of CW Sweepstakes, but strong participation in SSB Sweepstakes vaulted them to a First Place overall finish in the first ever SMC Sweepstakes Sweepstakes, according to the preliminary results released today, with the East team taking second place.
The Sweepstakes Sweepstakes is not necessarily about big scores: the East team had the highest average score per log for SS CW and the Northwest team (who led the competition after SS CW) had the highest average score per log for SS SSB along with the highest individual score. And, the East team had the most logs from both contests with scores of 100,000 points or more.
11/13/2014 – The question came up, when should I be taking my off-time for Sweepstakes. As a reminder, you can operate 24 of the 30 hours. For your first break, the traditional Midwest thinking is to operate as long as the rate is decent on Saturday night. This is usually around 2 a.m. to 3 a.m. CT (08-09 zulu). You would take off about 3-4 hours, until the East Coast wakes up and then get back on the low bands for those close- in QSOs. You would then take various 30-60 minute breaks throughout Sunday to break up the monotony. In the 2013 ARRL November Phone Sweepstakes write-up, they published a graph of QSOs by hour for the the entire contest. You might want to study this to develop your own plan. Please keep in mind that this data is for the entire geographic area, and Midwest best times and strategies may not line up exactly with this chart. Of course, it would be great if we could have a similar chart just for W9!
Click on the graph to enlarge
PVRC: 857,723,502 points
NCCC: 724,265,230 points
SMC: 637,072,294 points
11/11/2014 – It has been noted that SMC has the highest club member participation. We came from behind and moved to second place in the summer competition. Notice we still had the lowest point scores but won with member participation.