Published Friday, 16 March 2012
Mike Nesbitt was working away in his Newtownards constituency office, knowing the odds were shortening on a successful campaign.
John McCallister lodged his nomination papers at lunchtime.
At around the same time Paddy Power suspended voting on the leadership race.
With Kennedy withdrawing, the force is with Nesbitt.
There were overtures about a possible deal but John McCallister believes that the difference is too great.
The South Down MLA believes the UUP should go into opposition immediately while Mike Nesbitt says 'politics is about power' and the party should remain in the Executive.
He does, however, not rule out going into opposition in the future.
On Saturday morning the party chairman David Campbell will meet the two contenders and urge a civilised contest.
But Nesbitt will be hard to stop.
Danny Kennedy knew that and opted out.
John McCallister is a fighter though and Basil McCrea will be at his side when he returns from America on Thursday.
But from this distance Mike Nesbitt looks unstoppable.
The outcome will be decided on 31 March; the same day as the Titanic signature Project is opened in Belfast.
But that's another story!