The 2011 edition of the CQ WPX Participant Survey was another great success.  Survey invitations were sent to over 7500 email addresses based on all logs received for the 2011 SSB and CW contests. There were 4949 visitors who started the survey, with 3584 completing all questions. These are very high numbers for a voluntary survey and demonstrate the passion that participants have for the contest.  Thank you all!

Q1. Which phrase best describes your operating style in the CQ WPX Contest?

Response Count Percent
Serious competitor trying to win a certificate 1259 30.77%
Part time operator trying for the highest score possible 1306 31.92%
Chasing contacts for WPX or other awards 515 12.59%
Having fun and giving points to others 917 22.41%
Other 95 2.32%
Total 4092

This demonstrates we have a broad spectrum of interest levels represented in the results.

Q2. What category do you normally enter?

Response Count Percent
Single-Operator 3738 91.84%
Multi-Operator 332 8.16%
Total 4070

This percentage is in line with the overall activity in the contest.

With the growth in activity in the RTTY mode of CQ WPX, Ed, W0YK, and I have been discussing the possibility of aligning the rules so that RTTY, SSB and CW were all the same. The following questions were focused on some of the key differences between RTTY and SSB/CW rules.

Q3. Should the use of the 160 meters (1.8 MHz) band be removed from the contest? (The contest would only use 10, 15, 20, 40, and 75/80 meter bands.)

Response Count Percent
Yes 1521 38.11%
No 2470 61.89%
Total 3991

The RTTY contest does not include 160 meters. SSB/CW participants showed strong support for keeping 160 meters as part of the contest.

Q3 Comments:

160 is a good challenge for those of us that enjoy chasing DX there and the contest provides some chances for getting prefixes that usually aren’t there.

160 is a Ham Band like any other Band that Contesters enjoy operating. Why would anyone want to narrow our opportunities for making Q’s?

160 m adds to the score during low sun spots.

160M is probably marginal during the two contest periods and so may not contribute much to the overall contest.

160m to me should be off limits like 12 and 17. Not enough hams with 160m capability and 75/80 get so crazy it does not leave room for other none contesters to go and enjoy radio…Fairness to all.

160m unfairly benefits densely populated regions.

A high percentage of ham in the world don’t have antennas for this band, I think could increase the AB category participation.

A lot of us have gone to great lengths to be competitive on Top Band and we would like to exercise that capability in contests.

Absolutely not, I love top band and have enjoyed making contacts from other die hard entrants. Most of the ‘serious’ contesters don’t bother with the band because their Q rates are not high enough. Perhaps if more people tried it, they would be pleasantly surprised. Consider making an hour of 160M operating mandatory.

Although little time is spent on 160 during the WPX contest, activity isn’t nil.

As 10 meters works best in southern countries, 160m does same for northern countries. If you take one band from contest, someone is going to ask you to remove 80 meters. After awhile, WPX is only single band contest….

Could be removed only if CQ WPX 160m exist as a separate WPX edition …

Especially for WPX CW since that’s in MAY which is no good for 160m. In addition, who wants to do SSB on 160m, hah!

First thought – doesn’t matter. Second thought – there are 160m records out there, let the topbanders have their fun.

Granted, 160 is not *that* important in this contest, but we should be encouraging activity on the band.

Here in South America for example 160 meters is a big disadvantage in comparison with other people that goes to Central America to contact Americans and Europeans. For me, you can remove it.

I don’t use 160 meter band but there are OM ‘crazy’ for 1.8 MHz I think it does not matter much. The serious Single OP’s will not spend much time on this band due to lower Pts/Q ratio and slower rate. and so if there are not problems … why not?

In Italy band is only 20 KHz … too small for contesting!

Legal operation in Germany is allowed from 1810 – 1850 only. Contesting above 1850 is forbidden by law.

Many stations do not have 160 antennas and are at a disadvantage to the additional points/multipliers.

The WPX is a rate contest and there is not much rate on 160. Why disturb the Top Band?

This is the band that separates the men from the boys…

Look for part 2 in a few days…