In the dying minutes of the hunt, we had to deal with some questions which required exceptional observation skill in the last few sectors. Although we failed in 3 questions, I did not find the questions very though.
36) Successful at what they do, Shelly-Ann Fraser and Britta Steffen might be classed as one.
A comparatively long clue by the modern standard of hunt questions. When googling those names found in the clue, one is apt to find that they're female athletes, i.e. a runner and swimmer. Both were successful in the sprint events in their respective sports. Although the information is easily obtained from the internet, it does not follow that it is easy to find the answer, especially when hunting is a sector with so many signboards on both sides.
Because of time pressure, one is blind to some signboards. And there is that tendency to grab whatever we can find to fit to the question, but especially so if that board appears to fit well! Such was the case with a signboard located on the other side, in fact in a different sector, but clearly visible with the word FASTEST on it. There were other smaller words on that signboard of course, but owing to the distance, they were not visible to the naked eye.
Now, knowing that these two athletes were the best in their respective disciplines, the question we must ask is whether that single word, i.e. FASTEST, can fit the clue. Notice that the question is very general—there is nothing specific about the type of sports, for example. So one might argue that FASTEST is at least a promising candidate.
Not known to my team mates, over on this side of the road, and much closer from where they were standing, was a signboard with SPEED QUEEN on it. This answer appeared to be more appealing in the sense that it gave a more "stylish" title to the successful athletes.
But styles aside, can we find anything wrong with FASTEST? One possible argument is that FASTEST does not cover the gender of the athletes, i.e. FASTEST can also refer to male athletes. Nevertheless FASTEST can still fit. Maybe a pain-in-the-neck hunter might want to argue that those ladies are not QUEENS in the ordinary sense of the word, and the debate can become something akin to a soap opera like Dallas or Dynasty.
It's not clear if the CoC was aware of the existence of FASTEST, but in this particular case, he decided to protect himself anyway:
A36) SPEED QUEEN @ Kedai Dobi Maju
And now it becomes clear why the CoC had started his clue with "Successful at what they do," when at first glance these extra words did not seem to add any value to the clue. With these few extra words, the hunters are restricted to Kedai Dobi Maju which, according to the CoC, answers the "Successful" part of the clue.
It's always a good idea, especially when adopting proper nouns in the clue, to add other hints to narrow down the scope of search. Unfortunately, MAJU does not mean SUCCESSFUL. If that word had been BERJAYA or even JAYA, then it would have been ideal. But MAJU means to "move forward", and moving forward does not necessarily mean "successful". I used to tell my nephews when teaching them the game of chess, that moving forward doesn't necessarily mean that you're winning (successful).
I think we would have chosen SPEED QUEEN anyway had we been able to spot that board. But FASTEST is not exactly wrong. However, being an occasional CoC myself, and when thrown into this situation, I would stick to my intended answer, i.e. SPEED QUEEN. So I can easily agree with the decision of the Kiwanis' CoC. The only different thing I'd do is probably to choose an alternative word for SUCCESSFUL which is more accurate for its purpose in the riddle.