The fat lady can start warming up her vocal chords.

About 294,000 Canadians have signed up to vote for the next leader of the Liberal Party of Canada. Justin Trudeau’s campaign claims as many as 170,000 are his supporters — an assertion that no other campaign dares refute.

If Trudeau’s team has gathered that many supporters, it puts him at 60 per cent of the total and on track for an easy first ballot win. But the math is not as simple as that. Among those 294,000 eligible voters are an undefined number of members and supporters. The former are paid members of the party who can likely be counted on to vote, while the latter were able to sign-up for free and may be less committed. As the party did not announce how many members the Liberals now have, one can safely assume the vast majority of new sign-ups are supporters.

This is not necessarily something the Liberal Party should be ashamed of. It seems that the campaigns were focusing primarily on signing-up supporters rather than members, as they have the same voting rights when it comes to choosing the leader. Those supporters can be transformed into members at a later date. For a political party, having the names, phone numbers, and/or email addresses of almost 300,000 supporters is money in the bank.

However, the party could be setting itself up for a disappointing turnout rate for the leadership vote. The New Democrats had 130,000 members eligible to vote in their leadership race, but only about half of them casted a ballot. It might be too much to expect even that level of turnout for the Liberals due to the new supporter category. Still, it seems likely they will at least have more ballots cast in their leadership race than the NDP did in theirs.

But unlike the NDP race, in which votes were equally weighted, Liberal contestants may care more about where the votes come from than the overall number. Each riding in the country carries the same weight, so the 82 members and supporters in Abitibi-Baie-James-Nunavik-Eeyou, as reported by The Globe and Mail’s Daniel Leblanc, are just as important to each candidate as the 5,300 voters in Newton-North Delta.

According to that report, British Columbia has more eligible voters than the much larger Quebec. On the face of it, that would seem to give Joyce Murray a boost. She is a B.C. MP and her co-operation plan is similar to what Nathan Cullen, also an MP from British Columbia, was proposing during the NDP leadership race. But B.C. has only 36 ridings, whereas Quebec has 75. Even Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba together have 56 and will carry more weight than B.C.

That makes the small number of eligible voters in these three Prairie provinces worth their weight in gold. With fewer Liberals to sway, the endorsements Justin Trudeau has received from MPs Ralph Goodale and Kevin Lamoureux, as well as that of Jon Gerrard (leader of the Manitoba Liberals), could come in handy.

It will make winning the ground game incredibly important. Marc Garneau and Martin Cauchon might not have a chance of winning Trudeau’s Papineau riding (where there are more than 2,000 eligible voters), but they can take a run at a Quebec riding like Abitibi-Baie-James-Nunavik-Eeyou, which is worth just as much. Nevertheless, they still face an uphill battle. They may have a shot at ridings with few members, but the 2,000+ supporters in Papineau can be put to good use by the Trudeau campaign elsewhere on the island of Montreal. Team Trudeau already command a team of volunteers undoubtedly larger than the number of supporters some of the campaigns have signed-up.

The rules of the leadership vote will level the playing field somewhat, and make it possible for some contestants to shine if they perform well in some regions. Even so, there seems to be little question that Trudeau will win.

Éric Grenier taps The Pulse of federal and regional politics for Huffington Post Canada readers on most Tuesdays and Fridays. Grenier is the author of ThreeHundredEight.com, covering Canadian politics, polls and electoral projections.

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  • Prime Minister Trudeau and his then-wife Margaret leave the city's Notre Dame Basilica Sunday afternoon after the christening of their 22-day old infant Justin Pierre James, Jan. 16, 1972. Tasseled shawls kept the baby hidden from photographers and the 10-degree-below-zero weather.

  • Eleven-month-old Justin Trudeau, urged on by his mother Margaret Trudeau, crawls up the steps of an aircraft in Ottawa Dec. 5, 1972 to meet his father, then-prime minister, Pierre Trudeau on his return from Britain.

  • Pierre Trudeau is saluted by RCMP Officer as he carries son Justin to Rideau Hall in 1973. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/02/14/justin-trudeau-cries-cried-photo-loyalist-college_n_2690299.html">Justin Trudeau teared up when he was presented with a framed copy while visiting Loyalist College in 2013</a>.

  • Alexandre (Sacha) Trudeau delivers a right hook to his older brother Justin during a play fight in 1980 at Ottawa airport as the boys await a flight with the return of their father, then-prime minister, Pierre Trudeau. Nobody was injured. Justin was born in 1971 and Sacha in 1973 - both on Christmas day.

  • March 1979 photo of the Trudeau children: Michel (front), Alexandre (Sacha) and Justin (rear).

  • It was a big day for Dad, but a long day for the three Trudeau children. Left to right, Justin, Michel and Alexandre (Sacha) Trudeau attended the swearing in ceremonies of their father Pierre Elliott Trudeau as Prime Minister March 3, 1980 at Government House.

  • Then-prime minister Pierre Trudeau and 10 year-old son Justin walk toward a plane at CFB Ottawa on Nov. 7, 1982.

  • Then-prime minister Pierre Trudeau, left, watches as his 11-year-old son Justin swings on a chain during a tour of an old fort in the Omani town of Nizwa Dec. 2, 1983. Trudeau and Justin spent the day visiting the towns of Jebel and Nizwa 165 kilometres south of Muscat.

  • Then-prime minister Pierre Trudeau's 11-year-old son Justin jumps off an old cannon while visiting a fort along with his father in the Omani town of Nizwa and Jebel.

  • Justin Trudeau and friend Mathieu Walker in the Sahara desert in October, 1994.

  • Justin Trudeau and friend Mathieu Walker in the Sahara desert in October, 1994.

  • Justin Trudeau with friends Mathieu Walker and Allen Steverman in Shanghai in 1994.

  • Justin Trudeau with friends Mathieu Walker (left) and Allen Steverman (centre) at the Great Wall of China in 1994.

  • Former prime minister Pierre Trudeau (L), his son, Alexandre (Sacha), ex-wife Margaret Kemper and son Justin weep as they leave a memorial service for their son Michel in Montreal in 1998. Michel Trudeau drowned after being swept into a lake during an avalanche in British Columbia.

  • Justin (left) and Alexandre (Sacha) Trudeau lean out of the funeral train to show appreciation to mourners who turned out to pay their respects to former prime minister Pierre Trudeau in Dorval, Que., Monday Oct. 2, 2000. Trudeau's casket was moved from Ottawa to Montreal for a state funeral. ()

  • Justin Trudeau is consoled by his mother Margaret after reading the eulogy for his father, former prime minister Pierre Trudeau during his state funeral in Montreal, Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2000.

  • Justin Trudeau delivers a eulogy for his late father Pierre Trudeau during the state funeral for the former prime minister at the Notre-Dame Basilica in Montreal, Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2000. Trudeau first caught the public heartstrings in October 2000, when he delivered a moving, deeply felt eulogy for his legendary father, weaving an emotional spell from inside the cavernous Notre-Dame Basilica in Montreal.

  • Justin Trudeau breaks down on his father's casket after reading the eulogy during the state funeral for former prime minister Pierre Trudeau Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2000 in Montreal.

  • Justin Trudeau gives a rose to a young girl, one of thousands of mourners who stood outside Notre-Dame Basillica in Montreal Tuesday, October 3, 2000 during a state funeral for his father, former prime minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau.

  • An enthusiastic Justin Trudeau talks to reporters during a news conference to promote avalanche awareness in West Vancouver Thursday Jan. 25, 2001.

  • Justin Trudeau stands at the base of a mountain near the evidence of a controlled avalanche at Lake Louise, Alberta, Friday January 12, 2002.

  • Trudeau with adviser and friend Gerald Butts in July 2003 at Virginia Falls, Nahanni National Park Reserve in the Northwest Territories.

  • Justin Trudeau carves through a gate during a celebrity slalom race in Mont Tremblant, Que. Friday, Dec. 12, 2003. Trudeau was taking part in a 24-hour ski-a-thon for charity organized by Jacques Villeneuve and Villeneuve's manager Craig Pollock.

  • Justin Trudeau spoke to students as Sisler High School about the benefits of joining the Katimavik Project on March 9, 2004

  • Justin Trudeau, son of the late prime minister Pierre Trudeau, leaves with his new bride Sophie Gregoire in his father's 1959 Mercedes 300 SEL after their marriage ceremony in Montreal Saturday, May 28, 2005.

  • Sophie Gregoire waves to the crowd as she arrives for her wedding to Justin Trudeau, son of the late prime minister Pierre Trudeau, in Montreal Saturday, May 28, 2005.

  • Then-leadership candidate Stéphane Dion crosses paths with Justin Trudeau, a supporter of Gerard Kennedy, at the Liberal Leadership Convention on Nov. 30, 2006 in Montreal. The day after he won the leadership, Dion told Trudeau he needed his help and urged him to run.

  • Former prime minister Jean Chretien meets Justin Trudeau at the Liberal leadership convention, Friday, Dec. 1, 2006, in Montreal.

  • Justin Trudeau poses in London, Ont., on Tuesday, June 5, 2007 with a group of youth who participated in the Katimavik national youth service program that he has been actively involved in. The funny faces came from a request by a parent taking a photograph.

  • Justin Trudeau raises his arms in victory after being voted in as the Liberal representative in Montreal's Papineau riding, on April 29, 2007.

  • Justin Trudeau, then Liberal candidate for the riding of Papineau, on the campaign trail with his mother, Margaret, in Montreal on Sept. 23, 2008. Trudeau snatched the riding from the Bloc Québécois by 1,189 votes.

  • Liberal Justin Trudeau, then a candidate in the riding of Papineau, on the campaign trail in Montreal, Tuesday Sept. 23, 2008 with his mother, Margaret.

  • Then-Liberal Leader Stephane Dion chats with Justin Trudeau in Vancouver before boarding the campaign plane to fly to Ontario, Oct. 7, 2008.

  • Justin Trudeau apologizes for swearing at Environment Minister Peter Kent in the House of Commons Dec. 14, 2011.

  • Justin Trudeau poses in this official photo for his boxing match with Senator Patrick Brazeau.

  • Senator Patrick Brazeau, right, and Liberal MP Justin Trudeau take part in a weigh-in for a upcoming boxing match Wednesday March 28, 2012.

  • Senator Patrick Brazeau, right, and Liberal MP Justin Trudeau take part in a weigh-in for a upcoming boxing match Wednesday March 28, 2012, in Ottawa.

  • Liberal MP Justin Trudeau, left, fights Senator Patrick Brazeau during charity boxing match for cancer research Saturday, March 31, 2012 in Ottawa.

  • Senator Patrick Brazeau, right, and Liberal MP Justin Trudeau take part in a charity boxing match for cancer research Saturday, March 31, 2012 in Ottawa .

  • Liberal MP Justin Trudeau celebrates after he defeated Senator Patrick Brazeau during charity boxing match for cancer research Saturday, March 31, 2012 in Ottawa .

  • Liberal MP Justin Trudeau kisses his wife Sophie Grégoire after winning a boxing match against Senator Patrick Brazeau on Saturday, March 31, 2012 in Ottawa.

  • Liberal MPs, including Justin Trudeau, look on as Senator Patrick Brazeau holds a Liberal hockey sweater on Parliament Hill Ottawa, Monday April 2, 2012.

  • Liberal MP Justin Trudeau trims the end of Senator Patrick Brazeau's pony tail out of respect in the Foyer of the House of Commons on Parliament Hill Ottawa, Monday April 2, 2012.

  • Liberal MP Justin Trudeau announces he will seek the leadership of the party at a news conference, Tuesday, October 2, 2012 in Montreal.

  • Liberal MP Justin Trudeau waves to the crowd of supporters as he holds his son Xavier and his wife Sophie Gregoire holds their daughter Ella-Grace after announcing he will seek the leadership of the party Tuesday, October 2, 2012 in Montreal.

  • Justin Trudeau, right, chats to his chief advisor Gerald Butts after taking part in the the Liberal leadership debate in Mississauga, Ont., on Saturday, February 16, 2013.

  • Marc Garneau, left, and Justin Trudeau take part in the Liberal leadership debate in Mississauga, Ont., on Feb. 16, 2013.