from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. One that is in a leading position in a race or other competition: the front-runner for the presidential nomination.
  • n. A competitor who performs best when in the lead.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Alternative spelling of front runner.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. a competitor thought to be most likely to win.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a competitor thought likely to win


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • It was 22-year-old rocker James Durbin of Santa Cruz., Calif., who was dubbed a front-runner though.

    The Seattle Times

  • For days, Mr. Monti, 68, a well-respected economist with close ties to European Union officials, has been identified as the front-runner.

    NYT > Home Page

  • Romney hasn't even gotten to be called the front-runner very often without some diminishing adjective "putative," "apparent," "seeming" thrown in.

    The Washington Post: National, World & D.C. Area News and Headlines - The Washington Post

  • Gingrich's ad then compares Romney to them and calls the front-runner a "Massachusetts moderate who runs away from Ronald Reagan."

    NYDN Rss

  • PORTLAND, Maine - A day after Mitt Romney regained some momentum in the Republican presidential contest, his rival Rick Santorum went on the attack, calling the front-runner "desperate" while promising to compete aggressively to win the state where Romney grew up.

    Yahoo! News: Business - Opinion

  • Romney is generally described as the front-runner and has been from the start. rss feed

  • Rick Perry, the Texas governor struggling to make an impression in South Carolina, has called the front-runner a "vulture capitalist". - Telegraph online, Daily Telegraph and Sunday Telegraph

  • In New Hampshire, Mitt Romney's campaign has the look and feel of a front-runner, which is important because his single biggest advantage in this race is his ability to convey the sense that he and his operation have the best chance to beat President Obama. What's News US

  • I went into the 1984 presidential race as front-runner for the party nomination but wound up battling Jesse Jackson and Gary Hart in a contest that forced Democrats to define what they stood for in the 1980s.

    The Good Fight

  • It was a huge blow: It cast doubt on our organization and spawned a wave of newspaper columns arguing that Hart had replaced me as the Democratic front-runner.

    The Good Fight


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