Toughie No 2566 by Django
Hints and tips by Gazza
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ***
This annus horribilis is drawing to a close so may I wish everyone a Safer and Happier 2021.
Thanks to Django for a pretty gentle Toughie. Some of the clues are rather wordy but the wordplay of all is clear and the puzzle has been put together without any obscurities, which earns applause from me.
Please leave a comment telling us how you fared and what you thought of the puzzle.
1a Driver should check this contest with newspaper after engineers fail to start car? (4-4,6)
REAR-VIEW MIRROR: a verb to contest, the abbreviation for ‘with’ and a UK daily all follow our army engineers and ‘car’ without its starting letter.
9a Flash, grand sedan (7)
GLITTER: the abbreviation for grand and the sort of sedan that’s carried aloft.
10a Chaps regularly tucked into food made from mould (3-4)
DIE-CAST: put the odd letters of chaps inside one’s choice of food.
11a Warm up inside with a whiskey (4)
THAW: hidden. I’m not sure why the US/Irish spelling of the spirit is used.
12a Careless Greeks fined right away for critical points (5-5)
KNIFE-EDGES: an anagram (careless) of G[r]EEKS FINED.
14a A poltergeist making ordinary adult horrified (6)
AGHAST: start with A and what a poltergeist is then change the abbreviation of ordinary to that of adult.
15a When people retire some workers will retain former government department money (8)
BEDTIMES: some industrious workers contain a former UK government department (DTI) and the abbreviation for money.
17a Without principles he is one up as American returns to generate tension (8)
SUSPENSE: remove the first letters from each word of ‘he is one up as’, add a 2-letter abbreviation for American and reverse the lot.
18a Gets on committees (6)
BOARDS: double definition.
21a Radio is becoming focus of syllabus for linguist (10)
TRANSLATOR: start with a type of radio (now largely superseded) and change ‘IS’ to the two central letters of ‘syllabus’.
22a Lawyer content to leave burglars’ fingerprints (4)
DABS: stick together a prosecuting US lawyer and just the outer letters of ‘burglars’.
24a Ultimately Ed Sheeran’s naked, dancing with date — it’s one way to describe him (7)
REDHEAD: an anagram (dancing) of [e]D and the inner letters of [s]HEERA[n] is followed by the abbreviation for date.
25a Flow out from faucet an American turned partially (7)
EMANATE: hidden in reverse.
26a Last of specials on menu is so complicated — including shelled oysters leads to incomprehensibility (14)
MYSTERIOUSNESS: the last letter of specials follows an anagram (complicated) of MENU IS SO. Finally insert the inner letters of [o]YSTER[s].
1d Watch half-cut group of drivers welcoming non-drinker for race meeting (7)
REGATTA: the first half of a verb to watch and one of our motoring support groups include the abbreviation for non-drinker.
2d Raising stock value after banks withdraw supply with many brands hit briefly (6,9)
ANIMAL HUSBANDRY: an anagram (supply) of [v]ALU[e] MANY BRANDS HI[t].
3d Video’s margins upset film franchise (4)
VOTE: glue together the outer letters of video and the reversal of Spielberg’s popular film.
4d Queen on currency charge (6)
ERRAND: our Queen’s cipher precedes an African currency.
5d Changed — assuming the writer’s in fashion with a bit of denim (8)
MODIFIED: a conjunction meaning ‘assuming’ and a pronoun the writer uses of himself go inside a synonym of fashion. Finish with the first letter of denim.
6d 1 Across shows you this — ignoring France — European investment reveals what most politicians desire (2-8)
RE-ELECTION: start with what you see if you look into a 1a, remove the IVR code for France and insert the abbreviation for European.
7d Surprisingly, most of army deem granola a breakfast favourite (6,9)
ORANGE MARMALADE: an anagram (surprisingly) of ARM[y] DEEM GRANOLA A.
8d Arrest son once secret police force launches (6)
STASIS: the abbreviation for son is preceded by the secret police force of the old East Germany.
13d Judgement sent masses haywire (10)
ASSESSMENT: an anagram (haywire) of SENT MASSES.
16d Perhaps Cuban lives with both sides of lovable rogue at the start (8)
ISLANDER: knit together a verb meaning lives or exists, both sides of lovable (1,3,1) and the first letter of rogue.
17d Succeeded with a fit, heavenly body (6)
SATURN: paste together the genealogical abbreviation for succeeded, A and a fit or sudden feeling of illness.
19d Procedures coming from case of scurvy — crew losing one on board ship (7)
SYSTEMS: start with the outer letters of scurvy then insert a crew or squad without the letter that can mean one into our usual abbreviation for ship.
20d Throw up chocolate bar by the sound of it — getting jacket … (6)
BOLERO: reverse a verb to throw up and add what sounds like the proprietary name of a chocolate bar.
23d … spoils chocolate bar (4)
MARS: double definition, the second what is supposed to help you work, rest and play.
My podium today contains 11a, 14a and 21a. Which clue(s) did you appreciate?