run circles around (someone or something)

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run circles around (someone or something)

1. To move much faster than someone or something. A: "Hey, wanna race?" B: "No way, I'm too out of shape. You would run circles around me!" My sports car is going to run circles around your pokey little station wagon!
2. To do something much better or more efficiently than someone or something. Her presentation on the way molecules bind together was so polished and well researched—she absolutely ran circles around the other students. When it comes to pure processing power, Spikerosoft's new machine runs circles around Flapple's.
See also: around, circle, run
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

run circles around someone

 and run rings around someone
Fig. to outrun or outdo someone. (Alludes to someone who runs fast enough to run in circles around a competitor and still win the race.) John is a much better racer than Mary. He can run circles around her. Mary can run rings around Sally.
See also: around, circle, run
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

run circles around someone

If you run circles around someone, you are much better than them at a particular activity, and can easily beat them. Try and make a property deal with a Majorcan farmer and he'll run circles around a Wall Street broker. Young companies are running circles around their older, richer, slower rivals.
See also: around, circle, run, someone
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012
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References in periodicals archive ?
Their most recent work, Feel Something, is a body of work that runs circles around the human spectrum of emotions.
"Al will be massively missed, he plays a high level of rugby week in, week out and a lot of the time runs circles around some of the younger players at training," said Redcar's chairman of rugby Chris White.
Ahead of her performance at the Royal Albert Hall, the more-appropriately dressed singer, 29, joked that Tony Bennett "runs circles around her", as HRH praised her for sending pizzas with LG spelt out in pepperoni to fans outside her hotel.
One can't help be reminded of Pasolini's "Trilogy of Life" with such a project, and though the material is tamer (but only just) and less poetic, Garrone's technique runs circles around that of his predecessor.
LINKED IN Tilden Ross runs circles around the big-chain trend with Marco Bi-cego's hand-engraved chunky 18K gold bead necklace ($5,200) and ingenious designs by Salvatore Barberi for Oromalia, including an 18K gold necklace, which can be worn long or as a short bib ($11,550), and a striking 35-inch chain with giant elongated links ($13,575).
I once held that my struggles here were "generational" in nature, but then I saw how my colleague, Charlene, knows this stuff cold and runs circles around me.
You know the one: With cool uniforms and a funky offense, Oregon runs circles around a mediocre league, but struggles against elite opponents.
Not only does he favor the road less traveled, Beam runs circles around his contemporaries.
United's Freddy Adu runs circles around seasoned veterans.
Ashley Tisdale runs circles around the twins as Maddie on Disney Channel's The Suite Life of Zach and Cody (Tuesdays, 7 p.m.).
By comparison, the 2004 Pontiac Grand Prix runs circles around the Camry and Accord.
The Ring offers superior scares and runs circles around rival horror films.
I enjoyed your film review of The Fellowship of the Ring ("Rings Runs Circles Around Rowling" by Steve Bonta, January 28th issue).