Times Quick Cryptic 1280 by Tracy

Posted on Categories Quick Cryptic

Solving time: 10 minutes. Having now written my blog I’m not sure why I needed all of my target time to solve this as in retrospect it seems pretty straightforward for  experienced solvers. Possibly some of the longer answers may present problems for others. Anyway I look forward to reading how you all got on.

As usual definitions are underlined in bold italics, {deletions and substitutions are in curly brackets} and [anagrinds, containment, reversal and other indicators in square ones]

1 Carbon copy for head (4)
CAPE – C (carbon), APE (copy). A headland as in ‘Beachy Head’ near Eastbourne.
3 Forward subbed (8)
ADVANCED – Two meanings, the second as in ‘lent money’
8 Start of employment male might authorise (7)
EMPOWER – E{mployment} [start], M (male), POWER (might)
10 Incensed judge on island (5)
IRATE – I (island), RATE (judge). The ‘A on B = BA’ rule for Across clues applies here.
11 Son with HM in a grand rambling royal residence (11)
SANDRINGHAM – S (son), anagram [rambling] of HM IN A GRAND. One of the Queen’s two private homes, this is in Norfolk and traditionally where she spends the winter months.
13 List of charges resulting from spat about artist returning (6)
TARIFF – TIFF (spat) contains [about] RA (artist) reversed [returning]
15 Tears over Italian soul (6)
SPIRIT – RIPS (tears) reversed [over], IT (Italian)
17 HQ‘s cool-headedness with little money about (5,6)
NERVE CENTRE – NERVE (cool-headedness), CENT (little money), RE (about)
20 I travel accompanying a married friend (5)
AMIGO – A, M (married), I, GO (travel). First learnt by me in the days of The Cisco Kid. “Let’s went!”
21 Odd sort, odd making stand (7)
ROSTRUM – Anagram [odd] of SORT, then RUM (odd)
22 Attractive person on team gets extra food? (4,4)
SIDE DISH – SIDE (team),  DISH (attractive person). The ‘on’ rule applies again.
23 Rare new breed (4)
REAR – Anagram [new] of RARE
1 Wood preservative, very big over in Greek island (8)
CREOSOTE – OS (very big) + O (over), contained by [in] CRETE (Greek island)
2 Briefly visit father at home (3,2)
POP IN – POP (father),  IN (at home)
4 Courageous favourite losing heart (6)
DARING – DAR{l}ING (favourite) [losing heart]
5 Live, actually (2,2,7)
AS IT HAPPENS – Two meanings
6 One with winning ways, church member I hesitate to say (7)
CHARMER – CH (church), ARM (member), ER (I hesitate to say)
7 Left after outstanding fight (4)
DUEL – DUE (outstanding), L (left)
9 Promise in order to get news? Exactly (4,3,4)
WORD FOR WORD – WORD (promise), FOR (in order to get), WORD (news)
12 Arrest me for waving flag (8)
STREAMER – Anagram [waving] of ARREST ME
14 Unhappy in ward, about fifty rioted (3,4)
RAN WILD – Anagram [unhappy] of IN WARD contains [about] L (fifty)
16 Wreckage found in Harbourside, Bristol (6)
DEBRIS – Hidden [found] in {harboursi}DE BRIS{tol}
18 Short trees in need of treatment (5)
TERSE – Anagram [in need of treatment] of TREES
19 Fish, black when small (4)
BASS – B (black), AS (when), S (small)

24 comments on “Times Quick Cryptic 1280 by Tracy”

  1. This was a great puzzle I thought. Took me almost 20m including far, far too long to realise 23a was an anagram. LOI was CHARMER, had to get all the checkers and them work out if it fitted – pressed submit in some trepidation. That and others in the NE caused me the most problems – didn’t see ADVANCED for ages. COTD though to SPIRIT, really quite lot going on in only four words.
  2. Like Vinyl, I didn’t find this particularly easy, and in retrospect it’s not easy to see why. I biffed SANDRINGHAM, which I thought I knew–although if asked, I might have said it was a golf course for all I could remember. NERVE CENTRE, ROSTRUM, & SIDE DISH took some time, as I recall. Last time I looked at the leaderboard, only Verlaine was under 4′; so I don’t feel as bad coming in with twice no. 2 George Heard’s time. 8:30.
    1. I know nothing about golf but there is a Sandringham golf course in Melbourne which appears to be world-famous.
  3. No accurate time but around 25 minutes, rostrum and streamer were last in.

    Cod charmer.

  4. Having spent a large part of Sunday failing to solve Dean Mayer’s puzzle, I felt punch drunk starting this one.
    CAPE went in quickly but then I wrongly stuck Crete at the end of 1d and proceeded rather slowly. But once I had a few checkers, there was a sudden rush at the end and I finished in 15:51 with Bass; there are too many fish in the crossword sea but this was a common one.
    A high quality puzzle I thought ( and similar in style to Dean?). COD to 9d WORD FOR WORD. David
  5. I felt I was being sluggish when, although I wanted to bif ‘spirit’ and loi ‘rear’, it took some time to justify them from the parsing. As always, once you’ve got it, it’s simple and you kick yourself. Still – I am buoyed by the times given by the formula 1 set (F1S?) as I came in at 1K plus 29 seconds.

    Edited at 2019-02-04 08:47 am (UTC)

  6. I found this quite chewy as well and am relieved to find that I clocked in at about 1.75 Kevins (though I can only give it a Good Day because I was over 14 mins). I did find myself hoping that SANDRINGHAM would slow up the non-Brits!

    Some delay was of my own making (having typed PPO IN for 2dn and thus making 8ac, my LOI after eventually spotting the issue, rather tricky) but most of it was down to Tracy’s misdirections – trying to put a J in 10ac, thinking that the definition of 14dn was “Unhappy” with “rioted” as the anagram indicator rather than the other way round, trying to convince myself that IGOAM was a word at 20ac (ahem), etc etc. Reviewing my own incompetence I can’t believe I didn’t take even longer.

    Thanks Tracy and Jack.


    PS can we start a campaign for a weekend QC? Maybe on a bigger grid?! I find I get real withdrawal symptoms!

    1. Great idea for a weekend QC – a Jumbo QC (although perhaps that would be an oxymoron?). I spent a long, long time on the Saturday Jumbo this week and was left with 7 or 8 unsolved.
    2. I agree that the QC fills a different gap so would like them at weekends. Any volunteers to blog it, should it happen, though?
  7. Steady solving for 14.52 needing checkers for things to fall into place – so just under SCC time. Like jackkt and others, it seemed fairly straightforward only after the event. LOI SPIRIT, well-hidden for me. COD ADVANCED for its economy. I also found weekend puzzles hard, not making much headway with either Saturday or Sunday 15 x 15, albeit on a desultory basis, so nice to get back to finishing!
  8. I must be losing it! I could only finish yesterday’s cryptic with aids, and was the wrong side of 20 minutes for this. Today, I struggled mostly with ADVANCED, NERVE CENTRE and AS IT HAPPENS. I put my slowness down to a later than normal night. Good puzzle though and no complaints – one up for the Setters this week.
  9. 27 minutes for me, with a gap of at least five minutes in middle when I was completely stuck with only half complete. The top right hand corner was a blank until I got ‘Daring’ and from there I got ‘Advanced’ and it fell out.
    Good challenge for the start of the week. Thanks all.
  10. Like others, I found this on the tricky side for a quicky. Deceived into thinking Unhappy was the definition for 14d, for example. I liked AS IT HAPPENS, WORD FOR WORD and NERVE CENTRE all of which made me stop to think, but COD to SPIRIT. Thanks Tracy and Jackkt.7:17
  11. Really struggled to get going and was just resigning myself to the need to settle down to a marathon effort when things started to flow. 17 minutes to finish in the end and reading others’ comments on the blog I’m happy with that. I also agree with many others who have said that in retrospect it’s difficult to see why it was ‘hard’ for a QC when there is no unusual vocab etc and all the clues are very fair.

    I suppose that makes this a very good QC – thanks Tracy for a good start to the week.

  12. ….AS IT HAPPENS, and was surprised to see the comment about the leader board. If I actually had a computer I’d use the Club timer rather than pencil and stopwatch ! This was obviously a “wavelength” thing.

    FOI CAPE, from where I proceeded in a chain until I couldn’t immediately spot RAN WILD, moved to another link, and then came back to it. I would have broken three minutes, but then took vital seconds before the penny dropped for LOI/COD NERVE CENTRE.

    TIME 3:04

  13. I found this one quite straightforward, taking 2 Phils plus 26 seconds. Must be a wavelength thing! I wasted a bit of time trying to fit RUM at the front of 21a, and flirted with RAN AMOK at 14d. Nice puzzle. Thanks Tracy and Jack.
  14. I thought this a tad difficult for a QC, but post solve there’s nothing particularly obscure. I finally limped over the line in 10:22. My COD was ROSTRUM. Thanks to Tracy and Jack.


  15. It took me a long time to get into the flow of this one. I put this down to some very well hidden definitions and some beautifully economic clueing.

    Thanks as always to setter and blogger.

    Edited at 2019-02-04 11:31 am (UTC)

  16. Slow going for me today but for no obvious reason. I was convinced that 14d was going to start with RAW, the 8a/9d crossers took some figuring out, as did LOI ROSTRUM. Crossed the line in 13.59.
    Thanks for the blog
  17. Over 18 minutes for me so at the more difficult end of the spectrum. LOI terse after stupidly failing to see for ages it was an anagram.
  18. Two Kevins, almost exactly, but it felt quicker. Nice puzzle. I liked AS IT HAPPENS, NERVE CENTRE, WORD FOR WORD, and SIDE DISH but LI were IRATE and DUEL for some reason…. Thanks to Tracy and jackkt (esp. for parsing SPIRIT!). John M.

    Edited at 2019-02-04 03:17 pm (UTC)

  19. Started with write-ins for 1d and 11ac, so I thought this was going to be a straightforward solve, but Tracy soon disabused me of that idea. Struggled with Word for Word, As it Happens, and Nerve Centre, which meant that I was forced to hop around the grid trying to pick off clues. I thought 8ac was Empower quite early on, but couldn’t see the parsing straight away, so that was another hold up. In the end I was glad to cross the line just short of 35mins. Invariant

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