7Q(Ø)NL in the CQ WPX CW contest

Remco writes:

At 0000z I started running on 40m but nobody came back After 38 mins I worked my first station with S&P (K3WW) with big problems.

Not because of the signal strenghts but the QSO took around 2 minutes to complete.

I remember a well known contest director stating: “Log what you hear in the air”.

After ~1.5 hours I had 12 stations in the log and was fed up with the ‘??’ and went to sleep.

Nowadays contesting is not logging what you hear in the air, but what logging software or databases ‘tell you’ what you are supposed to hear in the air! (?)

I applied for a ‘normal’ 7Q-callsign, but after several attempts 7QNL is what MACRA issued to me.

In the morning I tried to work a top station from Luxemburg and again the QSO lasted around 4 minutes to complete. When you hear back the recordings… it’s a shame!
Very skilled (WRTC capable) operators are not able to log four letters: 7QNL

It appeared they had ‘logging’ issues , they used Win-Test
(apparently not the latest version)

What happened before this operation:

  • 7QNL (also 7QAA) was added to MASTER.DTA
  • Win-Test was patched to accomodate 7QNL (and 7QAA) and the prefix defaults to ‘7QØ’ (despite that the CQ WPX rules state something different)
  • Mails were sent to the CQ WPX contest committee
  • The DXcluster (DXspider) unfortunately was not able to grant ‘7QNL’ access (‘illegal callsign’ (??)

What should I do… keep calling with a valid callsign but no QSO, or use a callsign ‘databases allow’?

Just before our trip I informed MACRA concerning inserting a number after the country
identifier (7Q) to serve as ‘plan B’. I decided to sign 7QØNL.
That went relatively smooth (lots of 599001 contacts ;- )
When we are in Blantyre next week I am invited to collect the permission/license there as
no time was left to send the permission to The Netherlands by mail.

After the WPX contest, the callsign will be 7QNL of course.

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