Never knowingly undersolved.

Enigmatic Variations No. 1040: Two Seventeen Eighteen by Owzat

Posted by mc_rapper67 on October 27th, 2012


This puzzle certainly wasn’t a sprint…and I had to stop for a few ‘comfort breaks’ along the way…but it turned out to be a very enjoyable EV, with a quirky/off-the-wall denouement.

Six unclued entries, relating to an event 10 years ago ‘yesterday’, were to be deduced: 2, 17 and 18, and A B and C. Odd that, why the mix of letters and numbers? Still, they are unclued, so we can’t do much about them at the start…let’s get solving and get a few crossing letters for those first.

I pressed on with some general solving. A nice mix of challenging, hard and – thankfully – some easier clues kept me busy for a while, and a few crossing letters started to slot in. 2D had PA?L?, 17A ???C?IF?E – and after a bit of head scratching and guessing I hit lucky and spotted 17A RADCLIFFE – of the 2D PAULA variety.

B then logically became MARATHON, and a quick bit of Wiki-reference revealed that on 13-October-2002 (10 years ago ‘yesterday’ from the date of publication) she broke the marathon WORLD RECORD (clue C) in CHICAGO (A) – making her the WINNER (18D) of that race.

The final step was to ‘justify’ the title below the grid – which revealed the final impressive bit about this grid construction – the winning time was 2 hrs, 17 minutes and 18 seconds. Nice touch. I also liked 23A OUTRUNS – quite appropriate in the circumstances!

I found this an enjoyable – and instructive – puzzle, as I will now probably never forget this factual nugget! Quite a few new words – to me – but all were gettable from the wordplay, followed by a quick check of Chambers to be sure: 9D KAID; 14D POPJOY, 32D TAISH and 28D NA-DENE (hyphenated in my admittedly ancient Chambers, so probably should have been indicated as (2-4)?

Overall a relatively quick solve compared to some recent EVs I have been lucky enough to miss in the blogging schedule – at least I managed to finish this one…

Clue No Entry Clue (definition in bold) /
1A EPIC Impressive draw, both sides having been disregarded (4) /
(D)EPIC(T) – draw, depict, without ‘side’ letters
4A SEASPEAK Lingo in the main is heard from what person at the top does (8) /
homophone/&lit-ish – person at the top (of a mountain) would see the peak…or would they? You could argue they’d see everything BUT the peak!
10A ASHEN Pale lady’s boring one (5) /
AN (one) around (bored, or pierced, by) SHE (lady)
11A ALFA Narrow-minded man’s given lead to authorities, being a grass (4) /
ALF (Alf Garnet, narrow-minded TV character) + A (first letter of Authorities)
12A TUMID Enlarged corporation has description of card used by many people (5) /
TUM (corporation, belly) + ID (card, used by many people)
13A IONISER Electrical equipment is covered by individual in current rule (7) /
I (i,electric current) + R (rule) around ONE (individual), itself around IS
14A PLACET Spike in part gets wrong court decision (6) /
PT (part) around LACE (spike, as in add something to a drink) – ‘placet’ being often wrongly used for ‘placit’, court decision
15A REFINED Splendid drills Jock’s put in order and polished (7) /
RED (or redd, Scottish to make tidy) around (drilled by) FINE (splendid)
17A RADCLIFFE Unclued (9) /
Thematic deduction
19A PEAG Mostly favoured silver native American coins (5) /
PE(T) (mostly pet, or favoured) + AG (silver) – PEAG being North American Indian shell money
21A MUTI Note nurses do traditional medicine (4) /
MI (note, in sol-fa notation) around (nursing) UT (do, or doh, another note!)
22A JAT Indian’s crown coming from the east (3) /
JAT (person of north-west India, or Pakistan) = TAJ (crown) reversed (from the East)
23A OUTRUNS Leaves behind not in rushes (7) /
OUT (not in) + RUNS (rushes)
25A RON Man from van leaves FT outside (3) /
(F)RON(T) – van(guard) – without FT (outer letters)
26A OCHE Sporting line from new edition of Echo (4) /
anag (i.e. new edition) of ECHO
30A SCORN Mock something oldfashioned on Sabbath (5) /
S (Sabbath, Sunday) + CORN (something hackneyed, or old-fashioned)
31A OLFACTION Look back on group creating a stink (9) /
OL (Lo, interjection, ‘Look!’, backwards) + FACTION (group)
33A PINTADO Cape pigeon seen in the drink with a gull (7) /
PINT (drink) + A + DO (con, trick, or gull)
34A APPEAR Show before a meal’s brilliant (6) /
AP (ante prandium, Latin, before a meal) + PEAR (pear-shaped gem, or a brilliant – noun, not adjective)
36A TRACERS Nags one going fast in case of tiredness (7) /
TS (case, or outside of TirednesS) around RACER (one going fast)
38A OASIS Rockband love getting changed? The opposite (5) /
O (love, nil, as in sports score) + AS IS (unchanged)
40A NAAN Middle cut out of prophet’s bread (4) /
NA(TH)AN – prophet with middle letters cut out
41A ICTUS Fit shown by unnatural gaping? Not right (5) /
(R)ICTUS – unnatural gaping – without R (right)
42A GLANDERS Looks to hedge the pound? An ass would find that fatal (8) /
GANDERS (looks) around (hedging) L (pound, as in LS&D)
43A ECHT Authentic article about cold rolling (4) /
THE (article) around C (cold) – all ‘rolling’ in reverse
Clue No Entry Clue (definition in bold) /
1D EFT More progressive political stance polled once again (3) /
(L)EFT (Left-wing, progressive, politically) polled (i.e. top letter chopped off
2D PAULA Unclued (5) /
Thematic deduction
A CHICAGO Unclued (7) /
Thematic deduction
3D MEDE Old Persian field announced (4) /
Homophone/double defn-ish – MEDE – old Persian people sounds like MEAD (meadow, or field)
4D SNITCH Nick has new desire (6) /
S (‘s, contraction of has) + N (new) + ITCH (desire)
5D AENEID Deputy Lieutenant missing deadline, abandoned large work (6) /
anag (i.e. abandoned) of DEA(DL)INE without DL – Deputy Lieutenant
6D STIFFENS Braces or contretemps (in the French sense) (8) /
SENS (french for sense) around TIFF (argument, or contretemps)
7D PAS Ballet step beyond last cast (3) /
PAS(T) – beyond – with last letter cast (off)
8D AFREET Demon Australian ready on tee (6) /
A (Australian) + FREE (ready) + T (tee)
9D KAID Constant help for an African chief (4) /
K (constant, in Physics or chemistry) + AID (help)
C WORLD RECORD Unclued (5, 6) /
Thematic deduction
B MARATHON Unclued (8) /
Thematic deduction
14D POPJOY Amuse oneself with music? Bliss (6) /
POP (music) + JOY (bliss)
16D NEURONES State (US) holding right individual in special cells (8) /
NE (Nebraska, US state) + US around R (right) + ONE (individual)
18D WINNER Unclued (6) /
Thematic deduction
20D SURFACED Got out of bed to browse one day (8) /
SURF (browse, t’internet + ACE (one) + D (day)
24D SCOPATE Tufted head seen in East Barking (7) /
COP (head) in anag (Barking – mad) of EAST
27D CHITAL Deer shoot in US state (6) /
CAL (California, another US State) around HIT (shoot)
28D NA-DENE No Scottish lodges study Indian languages (6) /
NAE (no, Scottish) around (lodging) DEN (study) – technically (2-4)?
29D STASIS Yen to come out of feminine underwear is leading to arrest (6) /
STA(Y)S (stiffening parts of corsets, without Y – yen) + IS
32D TAISH It has represented a voice in the Highlands (5) /
anag ( i.e. re-presented) of IT HAS
33D PONG Jerry’s new Golf gives a hum (4) /
PO (chamberpot, jerry) + N (new) + G (golf)
35D POCO Little person interested in party affairs losing heart (4) /
PO(LITI)CO – person interested in politics, or party affairs – losing heart, or middle letters
37D ANN Girl soon dropping round (3) /
AN(O)N – soon, dropping O – round
39D SOT Drunk from well at top of town (3) /
SO (well) + T (first letter of town)

Leave a Reply

Don't forget to scroll down to the Captcha before you click 'Submit Comment'

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

9 − three =