I translate the following
Andere Verkehrsträger sind in Sachen Innovation der Eisenbahn voraus.
Other forms of transport are more innovative than the railway.
I think that "die Eisenbahn" is used in the dative case here (could be genitive, but my gut feeling is it's more likely dative) but I don't understand why.
My thoughts so far:
- This is not governed by the verb "sein" as both sides of "to be" are the subject, therefore nominative.
- There is no preposition which demands the dative in this sentence - "voraus" is an adverb.
- I can make an argument for "die Eisenbahn" being the indirect object: the railway is judged in comparison to other forms of transport. However, I would expect there to be a verb demanding the dative, but there isn't!
- Perhaps "voraus" + dative is a fixed construction that I have not come across before? A quick google search didn't return any evidence to support this hypothesis.
I'd be really grateful for pointers to help me understand how the declination of "Eisenbahn" is determined in this example - thank you!