Before you guys dump on Bernie, everyone should know that it was my idea
to base the start times on local time, not Bernie's. We HFer's are so used to
using GMT for everything, that it seems almost sacreligious to base an HF
contest on local time, but here is my reasoning on the subject, see if it
seems logical to you.
If we start the 40m sprint at say 0000z, then for those on the east coast
this would be great time, 2000 to 0200 local. The long skip would be opening
up on 40m and we would not have to lose much sleep in the bargain. VE9DX
would probably have a pretty good time in the sprint.
But look at them poor guys over in Europe...starting at 0000z is like 0100
local time in Germany. Doesnt really strike me as fair that Erika & Co. has
to spend a sleepless night staying up to play in the sprint. The band would
start to go south for them halfway thru the contest as the sun started to
come up in the east and the f layers died out. Not a fun time for our members
across the pond and Erika would look like heck come the morning!
Now let's take a look at the guys on the left coast. For them, starting at
0000z is 1700 local time or thereabouts, hardly a peak time on 40m. They
might manage a few good hops towards the end of the sprint, but for most of
the contest the props will be short for them. I really dont think the left
coasters will have much fun either and N6YIH will start boo-hooing again abt
how they are always getting shortchanged out in their part of the world :o)
So that is my rationale for basing the sprint start time on local time. We
made the sprint 6 hours long to try and overlap the propagation across a
greater distance, so there is a good chance of working Europe fm the east
coast and Hawaii from the west. Also, you do not have to log in local time,
just work the contest starting at 2000 local time and log in zulu as usual.
Because of the short time, a sprint is pretty tough to make it fair for
everybody. I think basing the start time on local time is the best way of
achieving this...Jay N3DQU