ride (on) the coattails of (someone)(redirected from rides the coat-tails of)
ride (on) the coattails of (someone)
To benefit from someone else's success; to use someone else's success as a means to achieve one's own. Everyone knows you've been riding on the coattails of the governor these last two years, but once her term ends, you'll be on your own! Jonathan rode the coattails of his professor to get some recognition for his own work in several esteemed academic journals.