Apollo 17 moon

No human being has set foot on the Moon since Gene Cernan climbed back into the lunar module on December 13th 1972. Everyone knew that this would be the last trip for a while, but few expected it would take half a century before humans seriously considered returning.

Now, interest in space travel is as high as it has been in a generation. The emergence of China as a superpower has sparked a new space race, while ambitious billionaires like Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos are competing for both government contracts and space tourists.

US Vice President Mike Pence has stated that “the United States must remain first in space in this century as in the last,” and promised that NASA would put another person on the moon by 2024.

Giant Leap for Womankind

According to bookmaker Coral, it is highly likely that this person will be a woman. The bookmaker has opened a series of betting markets on the new space race, and the odds that “the next human to step on Moon is Female” are given at 4/5. That the very first human on Mars is a woman is also seen as more likely than not, at odds of 10/11.

NASA itself seems to support that view. The new lunar program Artemis has the explicit goal of landing “the first woman and the next man” on the Moon by 2024. Apollo put the first man on the moon. Artemis, in Greek mythology, is Apollo’s twin sister.

The program is part of a broader goal of establishing a permanent base on the Moon and finally sending people to Mars. As to when that might happen, Coral is offering 5/1 on a human walking on the red planet before 2030. That someone touches down before 2025 is given at 25/1.