The Castles Cup

Castles Cup 2023

Saturday August 5th 2023 from 00:00 GMT to Sunday August 13th 2023 at 23:59 GMT

The Castles Cup is not a contest. It is a very friendly event that promotes the activation of England’s historic sites and the hunting/activating of ECA/WCA references in the form of an activity period to include 2 full weekends and 5 week days. The main purpose of the Castles Cup is to provide everyone with the opportunity to improve one’s individual skills as an activator in the field or a hunter at home whilst having fun on their radio, with the incentive of receiving ECA Castles Cup Awards in addition to our regular awards.

Enjoy whatever time you have on the radio, either activating or hunting, maybe even both, ECA/WCA castle references. There will be lots of activity during this period with the added benefit of additional awards to supplement our regular awards program. All Castles Cup activations are also valid for WCA and ECA awards. Don’t forget each ECA reference has a Worked All Britain Square and could also be a POTA reference and/or a Flora Fauna, a great help to those that participate in those programs too!

Simply work as many English Castles Awards References as you can, on as many bands and modes as possible from the activators taking part.

Hunter Registration

Whilst all hunters are welcome to participate and receive their participation certificates at the end of the event, if you are a hunter that wishes to be included in the final hunter tables and have a chance of gaining the three top awards you MUST register your callsign with us. Registration and entry is free, awards and certificates are free, no log sending is required unless you are an activator. Scores are calculated from activators logs.

To register your hunter callsign with us please send an email to castlescup@englishcastlesawards.uk with your callsign in the subject line exactly like this:

CASTLES CUP “YOUR CALLSIGN” REGISTER

you will receive a confirmation that your callsign is registered and will be scored at the end of the event. Registration for hunters closes the day before the event begins.

Castles Cup Rules

There are 3 categories of participation.

  1. ECA Activator
  2. ECA Hunter England
  3. ECA Hunter rest of the world

(1st, 2nd, 3rd award certificates for each category will be issued, participation certificates are also available for everyone in digital format.)

The rules are simple.

Activate or work as many ECA Castle references to gain points.

Hunters

If you are a hunter you MUST register, please see details above.

Remember the Castles Cup is not a contest, it is an activity period where you can very quickly add to your ECA hunter awards totals with the added advantage of maybe gaining additional Castles Cup Awards and certificates.

1 point per Qso.

No band or mode restrictions.

Hunters do not need to send logs, your points are calculated from qualified activator logs!

You can work the same activator for extra points more than once, for example same band but different modes and of course on different bands.

Club callsigns are welcome to participate as a hunter however the club will not be listed in the final tables produced. In the unlikely event there be enough club stations active a new category may be added.

Example:

EA2ABC works M0MJA/p at reference G-00123 on 40m SSB for 1 point. He then goes on to work M0MJA/p from the same reference on the same day on 40m FT8 and 40m CW for another 2 points. After this he works M0MJA/p again at the same reference, same day on 80m SSB for another point and lastly on 20m CW and SSB for 2 points. Making 6 points from just one activator.

Later in the week, he works M0MJA/p from G-00321 this time he manages 40m and 20m SSB for a further 2 points then he works M0RBG/p from G-00815 on 40m SSB and CW, another 2 points!

This gives EA2ABC a total of 10 Castles Cup points by the end of the week.

In the event of a points tie for 1st, 2nd or 3rd place, the hunter with the most band slots takes that position. If there is still no clear outcome the position will be shared.

Hunter awards will be issued in digital format only. There are special awards for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place in both hunter categories and a participation certificate is also available for those who would like them that didn’t finish in the top 3.

Participation Certificates

Apply for your participation certificate after the event has finished via email to castlescup@englishcastlesawards.uk with your name and callsign in the subject line of your message. Your certificate will be emailed to you in good time.

Activators

Operating as a special event station is not acceptable under any circumstances whatsoever and your log will be declined. Adding Qso’s to your logs whilst checked in to any kind of net will also result in those logs being disqualified. Why? Because SES callsigns are generally more popular than the average callsign/p which is what this awards program is all about. Adding to your Qso totals via a net, is neither activating or hunting. These practices cause confusion for hunters at home. The Qso’s are generally assisted at the very least, with the activator not even having to establish his own working frequency.

Remember the Castles Cup is not a contest, it is an activity period where you can very quickly add to your ECA activator awards totals with the added advantage of maybe gaining additional Castles Cup awards and certificates.

1 point per Qso.

No band or mode restrictions, please do not log same band, same mode dupe Qso’s.

Logging /P, /M suffixes is ok but please / QRP is not a valid suffix and the contact will be invalid if you log the Qso this way.

As an activator if you are /p but also hunting other activators there is no need to call in with /p, in other words just use your normal callsign without /p at the end.

Rules for activators are much the same as those above for hunters ie. 1 point per Qso however, there are some important differences.

Identification: CQ ECA Castles Cup – Your Callsign – Your Reference Number.

Firstly all activators logs must be qualified containing at least 50 Qso’s. Activators also gain additional points per reference activated. Unqualified logs means no point for the activator or the hunter!

Activators can work from the same castle references as many times as they wish during the event. However the activator can only operate from the same reference once per daySeparate log files must be sent for each seperate activity the file name must include the date of each separate activition.

Example:

M0MJA/p submits 10 qualified logs over the activity period containing 1000 Qso’s. Therefore he scores 1000 points for his Qso’s plus 10 points for references activated, a total of 1010 points.

Normal WCA rules regarding the “1km” rule apply however, no multiple activations are permitted. ECA activators cannot activate more than 1 ECA reference at a time as they would normally be able to under WCA rules. If you happen to be at a location with more than one ECA reference within range, you must activate them separately, producing a fresh .adi log file for each reference. Activators can operate from references they have activated before but are also encouraged to activate some new references.

In the event of a tie for 1st, 2nd or 3rd positions, the operator with the most activated references wins. If there is still no clear outcome the position will be shared.

Activator awards will be issued in digital format only. There are special awards for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place and a participation certificate is also available for those who would like them that didn’t finish in the top 3.

Apply for your participation certificate once the event has finished via email to castlescup@englishcastlesawards.uk with your name and callsign in the subject line of your message. Your certificate will be emailed to you in good time.

Special Activator Awards

SPECIAL EDITION CASTLES CUP ACTIVATOR AWARDS

As a thank you to all activators that take part in the ECA Castles Cup and in edition to our regular 1st, 2nd & 3rd place awards, each activator who activates, qualifies and sends logs for one or more ECA references will receive one of our special ECA Castles Cup Awards. There are four special awards to collect. The Blue award for activating between 1 and 4 ECA references, the Bronze for activating between 5 and 9, Silver between 10 and 14 and Gold for activating 15 or more ECA references. All special edition awards are sent electronically via email and the official English Castles & Lighthouse Awards Facebook Group.

Activator Logs

All activator logs must be submitted within 3 days of the activation taking place, preferably sooner. Logs must be sent to Melanie in .adi format, see the details on our logs page. Please make sure you follow the simple instructions given, but remember to add the words CASTLES CUP to the subject line of your email message.

Results

Logs will be analysed, results published and certificates issued approximately 4 weeks from the end of the event on this page and in the ECA Facebook Group.

Have fun and good luck to everyone.

(If you enjoyed the ECA Castles Cup why not take a look at our ELA Lighthouse Challenge.

Castles Cup Results 2022


ECA/WCA Activations

Follow the links for more information.

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