"Vielen Dank!" - You made WAG 2015 a record event
4L8A, 9A3VM, CQ3L (Ops DF7ZS, DF1ZA), DL/OK2-31097, DK9PY, DL0PE (Op DL2CC), DL1A (Ops DD2ML, DJ2QV, DK7AH, DL2SAX), DL1IAO, DL3JAN, DL6IAK, P3F, SP7-003-24, UA7K and YT8A
category winners in WAG 2015 which had a record participation of 2186 stations submitting a log.
For quick readers: Link to the final results
Week after week nasty weather on the bands: Silence and hiss in the phones plus first signs of cobb webs at the panels. But just in time for WAG the bands served condx to the starving ops - and even meager to normal pathes then offered bright moments, sometimes even brilliant ones like 10m on Saturday evening German time. Many seemd to have been waiting for an opportunity to finally operate again. So a number of stations never seen before in WAG filled the bands. Brief summary by W1UE: "Lots of activity! It kept me hopping up until the end!" And that's how it sounds then (including what's more than QSB).
The friendly avalanche
We noticed new records in participation: 2186 logs are also an alltime high (before it was 1927 in 2013) like the number of 102 DXCC from where we received logs (prior best was 84 in 2013). All in all during the 24 hours of WAG our logsending participants operated for a time representing 617 days with 7,5 hours being the average optime. Most popular category outside Germany was CW low power with 365 participants while in Germany mixed low power ranked top with 453 stations. The average QSO number 289 did not reach the value of 2013 with 300. Nevertheless an avalanche never seen before of more than 624.000 QSOs approached our checking software.
It had to wait for too many logs until they could leave the repair station: Really or possibly incomplete logs, extremely individual times and a big set of tricky ways to distort logs (omitted serials, unusable formats like xls or shifted coloumns) kept the logchcking team busy. At the same time a fabulous group of helpers asked for logs from stations not having submitted one yet. So at the end we could check more than 88 percent of all QSOs via the log of the other station.
How is the logcheck done?
WRTC-qualification in effect
Some part of the activity based on WAG being a qualifier for the World Radiosport Team Championship (WRTC). That brought more activity from DX and more topcontesters trying to bag qualification points for the event hosted 2018 in Germany. One could notice a lot of SO2R operation going on - starting with the "basic" stress using one radio to run on the CQ-frequency and the other to pick multipliers on other bands during transmitting breaks of the first radio, up to efforts to use even three radios as E7DX reported on 3830 - but with the addition: "...didn't work well and ended in totally chaos". While many SO2R ops work complete contacts on one band and in that time pause on the other band, E7DX and some others demonstrated the full potential of SO2R with interleaving even the single transmitting sequences of the QSOs: Giving station A the report on the run band, then calling station B on the other band while listening to the report of station A, transmitting next CQ while listening to report of station B, listening to anwers on CQ while sending report to station B and so on. Most impressive case noticed by us was an op adding a 90 second short ragchew on 40m phone to a contest QSO - while making three CW QSOs on 80m in that time - all with always only one signal on the air. Transmitting has to be quick: 2 seconds for dropping one's own call and 4 seconds for sending "r 599 1234".
Epic - not resistive...
Not only more or less chaotic events during SO2R contacts flooded our check software. 15.000 activity hours follow Murphy's law and generate a lot of hair rising, tragic and amusing instances. Tragic is too often caused by the unbroken faith in spots and DOK-"databases". One German station used a special DOK - differing from the one noted in most "databases". About a third of their QSO partners faithfully logged what the software proposed and prefilled, instead of what was tranmitted... 9H1SP appeared as a ZS-station because a ZS was spotted on his frequency, CX2BR morphed into 3B9FR from whom he inherited his CQ-frequency and so on. And isn't it too understandible that one of us tech guys logged a difficult Greek call as SX8OHM? Bad luck that it did not deal with tech but ancient literature signing in reality as SX8HOMER - from one of the possible birthplaces of the author of Ilias and Odyssee. But everything else was completely simple as can be heard in this 33 seconds:
It can be woken up only by German stations. Its origin is the rule allowing them to work non-participants that send no serial numbers. The German station then is reuqired to simply insert 000 as "received" report. But the hunger for a "real" serial seems to be insatiable. So too many German stations started elaborate talks to snatch a serial from their clueless counterparts - resulting in one foreign station appearing with six (!) times sent 001. Starting from 0 again and again should be reserved exclusively to "Groundhog Day", sholdn't it? Needless to say that some negotiations took much longer than a QSO...
Nevertheless there happend fast and more effective operating. Only 8 of 18 records (DL, EU, DX) withstood. Hardest hit was Low Power mixed outside of Germany which saw a lot of international contesting topguns because of the WRTC valueing scheme. Besides winner P3F three other stations crossed the old mark by last year's winner R7MM. Foreign category winners had a reliable to big margin to their runners up - much different to two German competitons: The MultiOp and the Mixed low power category developed literally into ties while logcheck progressed. At one point MultiOps DP9A and DL1A with their more than 2000 QSOs were separated by the value of a 3 point EU-QSO and single ops DF1MM and DL0PE had a difference netting to less than one 1 point DL contact. It took more than a week of additional detail investigation to eliminate nearly all remaining tolerances to come to a reliable result. At the end defending champion DP9A (Ops DG1HWM, DJ6TF, DJ7TO, DK4WA, DL5YYM, DM6DX, KU7T) had to give in to new WAG winner DL1A. In the single op category Frank at DL0PE defended a margin equal to one multiplier or seven average QSOs to Yuri, DF1MM.
Bagging the rare J for fullhouse
DL0PE, DL0PPP und DK0JRS provided it - the rarest multiplier in WAG: With no district J it can be gained only by special DOKs starting with J. So those three stations offered the only chance to reach fullhouse - all possible 130 multipliers. After the logcheck it were 9A3VM, 9A5Y, CQ3L, E7DX, EA5BY, EC2DX, EA8RM, EI7M, LX/DF1LON, OH0X, OK7Z, P3F, TM6M and UA7K to have them all.
It is no official category but nevertheless somewhat prestigous: Who made the most QSOs without any error, having the best "Golden Log"? In 2015 this unofficial title amongst 188 stations without deduction goes to Bale, Z35Y, with 341 CW QSOs followed by CW ops LZ1DNY (314) and IK0HBN (303). The best "Golden Log" in Germany is noted for Hans-Jürgen, DL2ROM, with 288 errorfree contacts, also all in CW.
Otherwise the logcheck robbed participants of 8,7 percent their intial score. The 120 participants in the topten ranks knew how to minimize losses as they escaped with 3,1 percent (2,6% outside DL and 3,6% the hosts).
727 participants answered our survey in English, Russian and German. Evaluation had to wait until after the logcheck and results will be published in spring. One clear initial result was how much participants value the awards as pdf-downloads. It is this site.
Numbers, numbers and even more numbers are available on our statistics page. We especially recommend our extended statistic file with the bandwise QSOs and multipliers for all participants (without checklogs) plus SSB/-CW-distribution, distance in percent to next better ranking participant in the category and individual op-times. It is an xls-File, so you can play around a bit and build even "categories" of your choice or bandwise results.
All comments please to wag-info(at)dxhf.darc.de
Now it is time to say "Thank you" - to teammates Heiko, DL1RTL, and Klaus, DL1DTL, for yet another hour of checking and discussing still another tricky case; to Arno, DL1CW, and Axel, DL6KVA, for a first year on board WAG burdening much more than initially planned; to Franta, DJ0ZY, for still another build and help in fighting with and against software; and "Thank you" to DC1SK, DK2AB, DL4AMM, DL5ALW, DL9GCG und DM9KT for sending out much more than 1000 mails to ask for not yet submitted logs.
The final big "Thank you!" goes to all of you - operating in WAG 2015 even if you were too close or too far for top ranks or for exploiting all bands. All of you are the contest which only lives by your QSOs, regardless how many. We hope you have enjoyed your time and we hope to meet you again in WAG 2016!
Vy 73, Chris DL8MBS
WAG - a big and lively prairie for you hunters
A contest like WAG is more than a competition and a big pool of activity to dive in for the fun of it. With much more than 1000 DL-stations on air from nearly as many DOKs it is also an endless prairie full of live for the award hunters. You may know the possibility to get your confirmed contest qsos credited automatically via the DCL (German Contest Logbook). It works for more than 20 awards from "classics" like DLD or WAE to regional awards, too.
But there is more to chase during WAG. DL stations' exchange is their DOK which is the base for a wealth of German awards of all difficulties. From the big list of the Diplom Interessen Gruppe a few appetizers. Upper row from left to right: Romantic [era not mood] Road Award (stations from 18 different DOKs between Füssen und Würzburg in Southern Germany counting); Vulkaneifel Trophy (stations from nine K-DOKs counting towars the plaque with a vulcano stone); "Louise Trophäe" (a 465 gramm piece of coal from a former briquette plant, now technical museum); Bat-Award (counting stations with M-DOKs) consisting of the diploma and as possible add-on a soft toy bat.
Lower row: Goethe Award (stations from former living places of poet Johann Wolfgang von Goethe to be detected by their DOKs); Berlin Diplom (twosided, requires stations from Berlin with D-DOKs or from DOK Z20).
Hint: The booty will be bigger when you call CQ, too ;-)
Webinar about WRTC and WAG now online
The webinar about WRTC and WAG on 4th October is now online in the archive of hosting WWROF (tnx and especially to Ken, K4ZW). The WAG part begins at about 23:00 of the presentation linked here.
Logging programs help with contestfree segments
Not reading our rules before operating or the "heat of the activity" may cause participants to tune into the segments defined as contestfree in the rules. To prevent such unwanted incidents your logging software can help. When using CAT you will be warned automatically using newer versions of UCXLog, DXLog, HAM Office, TR4W or SD. Win-Test allows this also with only a few clicks before the start (see here how easy to do). Other loggers may follow and will be mentioned then, too.
In the meantime WAG says "Thank you very much!" to the follwing helping: DL7UCX, 9A5K, ARCOMM, EI5DI, N4AF and DL6RAI. If your logger does not support this function simply download this tiny pdf-file with the contestfree segments and place it as small window on your operating screen like on the clickable picture on the right.
On WAG´s own behalf
After 50 years of DL1DTL managing WAG the task shifted 2013 to DL8MBS, together with DL1RTL. We hope that participants will not notice any difference in how things are handled. There will not be any changes in WAG rules this year. That means of course, too, that the contestfree segments as part of the rules remain in effect so that WAG and JOTA can coexist this weekend with as little interference as possible. So we invite all contesters to join the activity in WAG and hope to meet you in October. And now:
BIG THANKS to Klaus, DL1DTL