This event took place on the Stafford and Telford map again to try to reduce the amount of travelling that participating teams had to undertake. Only 9 teams this year arrived at the same start location as last year just on the edge of the very picturesque canal town of Stone. Upon arrival there was a bit of concern as the area seemed to be taken over by a dog show and homemade raft race but there was plenty of room to share and the start took place on the open field as last year again.
The weather for the day was dry and sunny as the teams assembled in the car park and remained dry for the event.
Station 'A' (G4XWP/P) was operated by Colin Boyce and was about 25km South of the start on Shoal Hill on the southern edge of Cannock Chase and just north of Cannock town. Hidden in a bramble thicket adjoining a plantation of pine this station was quite high up and required a bit of an uphill run to get to.
Station 'B' (G4CUE/P) was operated by John Drakeley and was located about 7km North East of the start in a rhododendrum thicket within a woods at Fulford. Distance between the stations was about 30km but required bypassing Stafford between.
Both stations delivered good signals to the start with only one team requiring an approximate for one station. There was a bit of confusion over one of the stations and morse but everyone was finally happy to identify it after a further morse transmission in the middle. There was a good mixture of teams going for A or B first which kept the operators busy all afternoon and it was pleasing to report that all teams found both stations with the winner finishing at 15.05 and the last team finished at 16.27. Most amazing part of the afternoon was Tim Parker finding station B at 13:45!!! What a stroke of luck he had there with none of the other teams finding this staion for another 30 minutes. Defeat was soon snatched from the jaws of victory though as a series of errors relegated Tim to second place.
Tea was again at Aston Village Hall where all enjoyed a good feed and the usual prize giving. Alan Simmons, Tim Parker and Graham Nicholls qualify for the National Final (subject to official confirmation).
My thanks go to John for operating and his time to help erect antennas, to Colin for coming all the way at the last minute to operate a station. My thanks also to my fiancee Anne, Grace and Rosemary for an excellent spread as usual.
|Position||Competitor||Finish||Time A||Time B|