English version

front-runner

From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishfront-runnerˌfront-ˈrunner noun [countable] 🔊 🔊 COMPETE WITH/TRY TO BEATthe person or thing that is most likely to succeed in a competition 🔊 the front-runner in June’s presidential election
Examples from the Corpus
front-runnerRecall the dull front-runner, unloved but unavoidable, who plods ahead to victory in his place.He had predicted he would win the Louisiana caucuses and be a strong runner-up to Dole, the front-runner, in Iowa.
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