steal a march on


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steal a march on someone or something

to precede someone who has the same goal; to accomplish something before someone else does. Jeff stole a march on all of us when he had his story published. Our competitor stole a march on us and got the big contract.
See also: march, on, steal

steal a march on somebody/something

to spoil someone's plans and get an advantage over them by doing something sooner or better than them The company plans to steal a march on its competitors by offering the same computer at a lower price.
See also: march, on, steal

steal a march on

Gain an advantage over unexpectedly or secretly, as in Macy's stole a march on their rival department store with their Thanksgiving Day parade. This metaphoric expression comes from medieval warfare, where a march was the distance an army could travel in a day. By quietly marching at night, a force could surprise and overtake the enemy at daybreak. Its figurative use dates from the second half of the 1700s.
See also: march, on, steal