false start

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false start

1. In a sporting event, a situation in which one player or team begins before the official signal has been given. The team was issued a penalty by the referee after the false start.
2. An unsuccessful attempt to begin something. After several false starts, Gina was finally able to make some progress in writing her term paper.
See also: false, start

false start

A wrong beginning, as in After several false starts she finally managed to write the first chapter. The term originated in racing, where it refers to beginning a race before the starting signal has been given. The expression was soon transferred to other kinds of failed beginning. [Early 1800s]
See also: false, start

(make) a false ˈstart

an attempt to begin something that is not successful: After a few false starts, I finally managed to work the fax machine.He made a few false starts early on in his acting career, but then found success with the Royal Shakespeare Company.
In sport, a false start is a situation when a competitor in a race starts before the official signal has been given.
See also: false, start
References in periodicals archive ?
Notably, why was the race declared a false start in the first place and why did it take so long to call a halt?
Then there is All-Pro tight end Jason Witten who had three drops and two false starts Sunday against the Buccaneers.
Usain Bolt has held his nerve after two false starts by competitors and powered to the year's fastest 100 metres at the Jamaica International Invitational on Saturday.
Defending champion Bolt was disqualified from the 100 metres final in the World Championships on Sunday for a false start, leaving fellow Jamaican Yohan Blake to claim the title.
USAIN Bolt's quest to become an athletics legend took a stunning blow last night when the triple Olympic champion was disqualified from the 100 metres final at the World Championships for a false start.
* A dejected Usain Bolt after being disqualified Jamaica''s Usain Bolt, fourth from bottom, false starts from the men''s 100m final at the World Athletics Championships in Daegu
He was delayed by a false start and then a faulty start before striding to victory ahead of fellow Jamaicans Nesta Carter and Michael Frater.
Williamson, who was third in the trials, and Craig Pickering - disqualified for a false start in Sheffield - are now set to join Chambers in the team for Turin from March 6-8.
THERE is a certain quirkiness to Aberfeldy which means they can get away with technical hitches and false starts while the good humoured audience does not seem to mind.
The world indoor champion, now 30, shrugged off the unsettling effects of two false starts and clocked a comfortable 6.59sec victory ahead of Russian dangerman Andrei Yepishin.
After many false starts, at least Japan appears finally to be escaping two decades bogged down in a deflationary quagmire.
And when Marcus describes the recording of the song, in June 1965, with all its false starts and dead ends, we see how perilously close it came to never existing at all: "The singer is trying to find his way into his song, plinking notes on the piano.
After several false starts, the two researchers achieved success.
There have been some false starts for the economy, and hopes have been raised, only to have the optimism dashed as the economy slowed down again.
A 100-yard dash final in which all of the contestants were disqualified for false starts.