kick at the can

(chiefly US and Canada, idiomatic) An attempt or an opportunity.

Example: 2005 June 17, Carol Vogel, "The Modern Buys 'Rebus'," New York Times (retrieved 13 Feb 2014):
  "We're now in a situation where you get just one kick at the can," Mr. Elderfield said.
2011, Paul Litt, Elusive Destiny: The Political Vocation of John Napier Turner, ISBN 9780774822671, p. 389 (Google preview):
  He figured that Canadian political leaders got only two kicks at the can, and he'd now had both of his.
2012 Jan. 20, Eric Jackson, "In Defense of Jerry Yang," Forbes (retrieved 13 Feb 2014):
  How many companies get the chance to flail around for 6 years and then get a second kick at the can?