Also found in: Thesaurus, Idioms, Encyclopedia.


1. One that does not start: The rookie catcher is expected to be a nonstarter for most games.
2. An idea, proposal, or person with no chance of being accepted or successful.


1. (Horse Racing) a horse that fails to run in a race for which it has been entered
2. a person or thing that is useless, has little chance of success, etc


(nɒnˈstɑr tər)
an issue, plan, etc., that does not get or deserve to get under way.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.nonstarter - a person with a record of failingnonstarter - a person with a record of failing; someone who loses consistently
unfortunate, unfortunate person - a person who suffers misfortune
bankrupt, insolvent - someone who has insufficient assets to cover their debts
flash in the pan - someone who enjoys transient success but then fails
dud, flop, washout - someone who is unsuccessful
underdog - one at a disadvantage and expected to lose
2.nonstarter - a horse that fails to run in a race for which it has been entered
bangtail, race horse, racehorse - a horse bred for racing


[ˌnɒnˈstɑːtəʳ] n it's a nonstarterè fallito in partenza
References in periodicals archive ?
Descriptive results and univariate differences between starter and nonstarter players according to the team quality (best and worst teams) in winning and losing games.
Gerrard's injury made him a nonstarter and when Torres (above) hobbled off in the first half I thought Liverpool looked like a mid-table team.
Mr Walker, a former bingo caller, said: "This is the show that many wrote off as a nonstarter seven years ago.
That leaves Malcolm Christie but that may also prove a nonstarter as there are concerns over his fitness record.
Whatever PAM's dubious strategic value, the image of a group of cigar-chomping fat-cats wagering on next week's bloodiest headlines should have made PAM a self-evident nonstarter.
Hartwig said the business-interruption issue is probably a nonstarter, for several reasons.
A product that forces a company to conform to its internal processes is obviously a nonstarter, as it forces the organization to conform to the tool, rather than the tool supporting the organization.
Just as broker-dealers are implementing a fee-based compensation choice, CPA financial advisers have learned that the commission versus fee quandary is a nonstarter.
Furthermore, he was infatuated with somebody who was going to be a nonstarter from the word go.
Sir, - Mr Williams' proposal of substituting wolves for hunting (Post, Jan 25) is seriously flawed and a nonstarter.
While employers would like to turn broken promises into an ethical issue, it's a nonstarter.