While his focus is on qualifying again for the World Radiosport Team Championships, Dan Craig N6MJ has again set aside this weekend for a full time effort, as he defends his Single Operator title in the 2008 California QSO Party.
“CQP is one of my favorite contests,” Craig told radio-sport.net.
“I like the fact that it is both modes, and everyone is looking for you which leads to good rates. In that respect, it’s a lot like operating at WRTC, so it’s good practice for that.”
Craig will again be operating this from the W6YI station near San Diego, where he churned out 2,581 contacts last year, for over 359 thousand points.
“I’m really hoping that we get some kind of a 15 meter opening, or else it will be a very long weekend,” Craig said. “I’m sure 20 meters will be the money band.”
As for those looking for a sweep of the Golden State’s 58 counties, contest organizers say every single one of them is going to be active in the 2008 test.
One of those hitting the roads and paying the high cost of gas will be Rusty Epps W6OAT.
“Tom, K5RC and I plan to be active as W6OAT/mobile from 11 counties,” Epps said on his QRZ.com site.
“We have budgeted time to stop in the rarer counties to ensure that we make a sufficient number of QSOs. We will be using a small amplifier (i.e., about 500 watts) and plan to operate both CW and SSB,” Epps added.
CQP organizers have been beating the bushes with emails and on-air appeals in recent weeks, and as always are touting what you can win.
“This is a ton of fun and has great rewards: real lumber plaques, wine, certificates and for just 100 QSO’s and some cash you can have the ever popular CQP T-shirt,” said new CQP chairman Rick Eversoles N6RNO.
The big winners will get to taste the official wine of the CQP, which comes from W6KI’s Twisted Oak Winery.
Eversoles will be doing his part as well to make sure that everyone has a chance at some of the counties that aren’t heard as much on the air.
“My county expedition team will ensure that Tehama county will not be a rare county,” Eversoles said. “We will be on 160m-10m with two radios and a limited operation on 6m and 2m with a third radio.”
Doing much the same will be a group led by Andy Stephens W6AWS, which will be operating as N6NA from Alpine County.
“This is a ‘rare’ one for all you county hunters!” wrote Stephens on his web page. “We will be operating 2 HF stations for the entire contest.”