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Publication numberUS3463496 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 26, 1969
Filing dateMar 11, 1966
Priority dateMar 11, 1966
Publication numberUS 3463496 A, US 3463496A, US-A-3463496, US3463496 A, US3463496A
InventorsAlbert A Weinstein, Willa S Weinstein
Original AssigneeAlbert A Weinstein, Willa S Weinstein
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Racing game apparatus including color matched dice and tokens
US 3463496 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)


CHIPS -'l 4 4| 42 E55 I I 5:


PHOTO FINISH CARDS Fig.H Q80 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 CHIP H'OLDER Fig. 5




9 ATTORNEY United States Patent US. Cl. 273-134 9 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A racing game apparatus having a board with a racing course pictorially depicted thereon by longitudinal and transverse lines defining spaces for occupation by playing pieces. One feature includes a turn portion with more spaces in outer lanes than inner lanes combined with lanechanging means allowing rearward but not forward movements. Another feature provides plural dice sets colormatched to plural chip sets enabling the player by selecting a particular colored chip from a limited quantity to control the speed of his playing piece when all the dice are cast. This is accomplished by the number indicia on one dice set providing a range of numbers of movements some of which are greater and some of which are smaller than the maximum number provided by the number indicia on another dice set. The sets may differ in number of dice or the dice in one set may have more faces than those in another set. Still another feature includes a finishing sequence whereby players whose playing pieces arrive nearly simultaneously in designated spaces adjacent the finish line match cards to determine the finishing order.

This invention relates to a racing game for simulating a human-controlled contest.

The particular embodiment of the invention which we shall describe hereinafter is a horse racing game, though it will be clear to those skilled in the art that the present invention is not limited to a horse racing game but may be employed as an auto racnig, boat racing, or in general any kind of a racing game using pieces to simulate other animals or vehicles.

While prior art eiiorts have been exercised to closely simulate in a game the actual happenings of a true racing contest, it is believed that these earlier efforts have been unsuccessful in one or more particulars and fail to achieve the true combination of chance and strategical skill that underlies a racing contest involving human control of an animal or vehicle.

One object of the invention is an improved racing game which more closely simulates the actual happenings of a true racing contest.

Another object of the invention is a racing game which combines both chance and strategical factors in a manner calculated to maintain amusement and excitement throughout repeated playings of the game both for children and adults.

A further object of the invention is a racing game which is versatile and sufliciently flexible to allow for wide adaptation of the playing rules to match the intellectual capabilities of both children and adults.

Still another object of the invention is a racing game closely simulating the actual happenings in a real-life racing contest yet aifording each player continuous opportunity to exercise judgment in determining the progress of his playing piece in continuous competition with the other players.

Still a further object of the invention is a racing game which allows the player to exercise proper judgment to secure an advantageous position while at the same time ice providing numerous situations involving pure chance that will impair such advantageous position, thereby tending to result in close contests for all players with the outcome uncertain until a final action is taken.

These and other objects are achieved in the invention, several exemplary embodiments of which will now be described in greater detail, with reference to the accompanying drawing, which description, however, is not to be considered as limiting, as the principles enunciated will have wider application.

In the accompanying drawing; FIG. 1 is a plan view of a principal embodiment of a game board of the invention, with several repetitive areas omitted for clarity; FIG. 2 shows a typical playing piece for a horse racing game; FIG. 3 shows a group of dice for use with the game of FIG. 1; FIG. 4 shows a group of chips for use with the game; FIG. 5 shows a chip holder suitable for accommodating and hiding a chip selected by a player; FIGS. 6 and 7 show packs of cards for use in one embodiment of the game; FIG. 8 shows the faces of representative photofinish cards for use in one embodiment of the game; FIG. 9 shows one form of holder suitable for receiving the photofinish cards; FIG. 10 shows a representative form of overlay member for altering the movements of the pieces; FIG. 11 shows a token for altering the movement of a particular playing piece; FIG. 12 shows a modified group of dice; FIG. 13 shows the white die of FIG. 12 in developed form; FIG. 14 shows a modified group of dice in developed form.

Referring now to FIG. 1, there is illustrated thereon a game board 10 suitable for playing a horse racing game which will conveniently illustrate the principles of the invention. The board 10 has printed on. its surface a closed racing course in the form of a generally oval track of the type commonly encountered in real horse races, and comprising straight homestretch 11 and backstretch 12 portions interconnected by curved turn portions 13 and 14. Only the turn portion 13 on the right has been shown in detail, the opposite turn portion 14 being similar. The parts of the track shown broken away are of a construction similar to the parts actually shown. The track is divided by longitudinal lines into a series of parallel lanes 15, eight of which are shown as illustrative, in turn divided by transverse lines to define plural spaces in each lane. Note that in the straight portions 11 and 12, the spaces are symmetrically arranged so that each lane contains the same number of spaces. However, along the turn portions 13, 14 the arrangement of the transverse lines is chosen to provide a smaller number of spaces along the inner lanes. For the embodiment illustrated, the innermost lane 7 along the turn has 16 spaces, whereas the outermost lane '8 contains 30 spaces, each intermediate lane containing two more spaces than the next adjacent lane toward the inside edge or rail as it is commonly referred to. As a result, as actually happens in a true horse race, it is advantageous for the players to direct their playing pieces along the inside lanes which will require the traversal of fewer spaces along the course. The rules allow the players to move their pieces forward, sideways, or even backwards, but the pieces cannot move diagonally or occupy or jump over a space occupied by another piece. Thus, situations will arise in which pieces become boxed in by other pieces, compelling a movement to an outside lane, as often occurs in a true racing contest. Further, because of the asymmetrical layout of the spaces along the turns, and to prevent movements of the pieces laterally which will simultaneously advance the pieces, the spaces along the turn portions 13 and 14 are provided with indicia, in the form of gaps 19 in the longitudinal lines, to represent allowable lateral movements. Thus, consider, for

example, the situation of a piece located in the space designated 16 on the turn. While the space 16 borders on spaces 17 and 18 of the next adjacent inner lane, the gap 19 only allows an inner lateral movement into the rearmost space 17. As a consequence, a player who moves his piece inward along the turn toward the lanes containing fewer spaces is prevented from simultaneously advancing his piece.

As will be further observed from FIG. 1, a number of spaces 30 on the board contain special indicia in the form of an X. A piece which lands on such a space, termed a racing luck space, is required to select a card from a pack or deck of racing luck cards 20 provided on the board. The racing luck cards 20 introduce the chance element into the game. They contain on their faces indicia requiring certain moves then or subsequently by the player, the indicia preferably being representative of a condition commonly encountered in a true racing contest. For example, for a horse race, typical indicia are as follows:

(1) Bear In-Move inward 2 spaces at the end of your next move.

(2) Bear OutMove outward 2 spaces at the end of your next move.

(3) StumbleDeduct 2 spaces on your next move.

(4) Bolt-On your next move, move outward 4 spaces before advancing.

For an auto race, the indicia could read, for example,

(1) Oil LeakSkip your next move. (2) Tire Failure-Deduct 2 spaces on your next move.

As a further technique for introducing the element of chance into the race in a manner which may affect other players too, in accordance with one feature of the invention, at least some of the racing luck cards have indicia instructing the player to take an overlay member 21, illustrated in FIG. 10, and place it on the board in a certain way or place to designate a temporarily altered track condition. As shown, the overlay 21 is simply a flat member, for instance of cardboard, with lines forming a space pattern which is related to that on the board 10. As illus trated, the space size on the overlay 21 is the same as that on the board. Alternatively, the spaces on the overlay can be larger or smaller so that a player requires fewer or more moves to cross the overlay. In the specific form shown, the spaces on the overlay contain the indicia M. The rules may provide that this means that a mud condition has been encountered, and it requires twice the number of movements to the next space. This will affect all the players upstream of the overlay. The card instruction can direct that the overlay 21 be placed, as shown in FIG. 1, at a designated location R, which may be outlined in darker lines on the track. As an alternative, the card can instruct the player to place the overlay a designated number of spaces in front of or behind his piece. In addition, the instruction can provide for the positioning of the overlay throughout the remainder of the race, or only during a designated number of subsequent movements, for example, the next two movements. Alternatively, a special die may be included to control use of the overlay member 21.

If desired, indicia designating a permanently altered track condition determined by appropriate rules can also be applied to certain board spaces, such as the spaces 23 containing the letter M.

The racing luck spaces 30 are arranged, as shown, in a special staggered relation in which the leading racing luck spaces, that is, those first encountered by the advancing playing pieces, in the inner lanes are diagonally arranged. The reason for this is that the vast majority of the racing luck cards penalize the player, and thus the players arrange their moves to avoid the racing luck spaces, if they can. The diagonal arrangement forces a player, when attempting to avoid the racing luck spaces, to move outward into a lane containing more spaces and suffer at least a partial penalty, while simultaneously freeing the inner lane for passage by other pieces. Thus, assume that a playing piece advancing along the innermost lane reaches the first racing luck space 30 when two space movements remain. Rather than continue along that lane and land in a racing luck space, the player may prefer to move two spaces outward into the third lane.

In accordance with a main feature of the invention, the players movements are controlled by a unique combination of dice and counters or tokens. In a preferred form, as illustrated in FIG. 3, six dice are provided, separated by suitable indicia, colors being a convenient form, into three sets containing different numbers of dice, namely, one, two, and three dice, respectively. As shown, there are thus provided six six-sided dice, one red 32, two white 33, and three green 34, all with dots representing the numerals 1-6 on their sides. In addition, each player is provided with a designated number of counters or tokens which bear indicia also separating them into sets correlated or coded to the dice sets. As illustrated in FIG. 4, each player is provided with a stack of red chips 41, a stack of white chips 42, and a stack of green chips 43. In addition, each player is provided with a device into which a selected chip may be placed and hidden from the view of the players. One form of suitable chip holder is illustrated in FIG. 5 as a hollow lid 44, with a number on top designating the player. The players piece, which in a horse race suitably is the figure of a horse mounted on a small stand 45, as illustrated in FIG. 2, bears a similar number. In playing the game, each player selects a chip from his available supply and hides it underneath his holder 44. The chip is small enough to fit within the hollow space inside the holder 44. Then all the dice are cast by one of the players. Each player is then entitled to move his playing piece a total number of spaces equal to the sum shown on the top faces of the dice of the same color as the selected chip. Thus, the player can exercise control over the speed of his piece by the chip selection. Obviously, a green chip having three dice associated therewith will tend to advance the piece much faster than a red chip having only one die. However, an important advantage of relating the dice to the chips is that chance will still play an important role in determining the piece movements. For instance, if the red die turns up six, and the three green dice total only four, then the player who selected the red chip has secured the advantage of a larger move without using up one of his more valuable green chips. Such possibilities sustain interest and create excitement throughout the game.

It will also be evident that the similar results can be achieved using only a single die in each set provided that the dice have different average values associated therewith. For example, as illustrated in FIG. 12, the two white dice can be replaced with a single 8-sided white die 84 with dot numerals 1-8 on its sides; hence, on the average, its roll would be higher than that of the 6-sided red die. FIG. 13 shows the white die 84 in developed form. Alternatively, using only 6-sided dice, then, for example, the red die 86 would have on its sides numerals 1-6, the white die 87 numerals 49, and the green die 88 numerals 7-12, to achieve the same results, which dice are illustrated in developed form in FIG. 14.

As a further feature of the invention, the number of chips distributed is carefully related to the length of the race to be run such that, on the average, all of the chips will be used up at the completion of the race. It is understood that after all movements have been completed following casting of the dice, then the played chips, after exposure to all to determine the movement, are collected and set aside. Thus, the wise player selects his chips carefully in accordance with the situation then existent on the track. For instance, when approaching racing luck spaces 30, it may be wiser to use a red chip to bring your piece to a position just upstream of the racing luck spaces, and then play a green chip which will tend to increase the allowable movement, enabling the piece to safely cross the racing luck spaces. Similarly, if other playing pieces impede forward movement along the desirable inside lanes, it may be wiser to play red chips until the lanes are adequately cleared for the larger movements possible when subsequently playing a green chip. However, as stated above, the provision of dice in sets of different numbers and coded to the chips precludes any assurance that playing a green chip will automatically result in a move of, say, at least ten spaces, since the green dice may roll all ones or twos. When the supply of regular chips is exhausted, a possible finishing sequence to be followed is to assign an order of chip play to each player for the finishing sequence based on his initial chip play. For example, a player who initially played a red chip would play green and red alternately in that order continuously until the finish. One who initially played a white chip would play white continuously until the finish. One who initially played a green chip would play red and green alternately in that order continuously until the finish.

The order in which the players make their moves after the dice are cast will obviously be significant. This can be arranged beforehand by the players taking turns going first, second, etc. Preferably, to introduce a further chance element, we provide an additional chance device to decide the order of playing. As illustrated in FIG. 3, this may be a seventh special die 46 having numbers on it which designate the players. With eight lanes on the track for accommodating eight pieces on the starting line, we pro vide an 8-sided die. One illustrative method is for the die 46 to be cast with the other dice. Assume that the die 46 comes to rest selecting the numeral 7. Thus, player 7 goes first, with 8, 1, 2, etc., following in that order. Suitable rules can be provided for indicating the order when fewer than eight players are involved.

As indicated above, the number of chips distributed is related to the length of the race. On the board of FIG. 1 are designated starting lines for races of different lengths. For example, at 47 and 48, respectively, are indicated starting lines for S-furlongs and 6-furlongs races. The pieces are lined up behind the starting line, with the post or lane position determined by chance (roll of die) or in any other convenient way, and are then moved around the track counterclockwise until they reach the finish line 60. For longer races, starting lines are provided for 1 mile at 50, for 1 /8 miles at 51, and for 1% miles at 52 (the finish line is ignored when first crossed). To illustrate a suitable distribution of chips for different length races for a game having a track comprising along the inside lane 50 spaces on the backstretch, 44 spaces on the homestretch to the finish line, with 6 spaces to the first turn, and 38 spaces on each turn, with two spaces additional for each adjacent outward lane on the turns, and with the 5- furlongs start line 30 spaces from the nearer turn, the 1- mile start line 4 spaces upstream of the finish line, and the lW-miles start line 1 space downstream of the end of the second turn, reference is made to the following table:

Number of chips of each Race distance: color given to each player S-furlongs l-mile 8 l fivmiles 10 This table is preferably printed on the board 10, as shown at 68 in FIG. 1. In general, for every 22 spaces of racing distance measured along the rail, a player is given chips whose average value on the dice is 21, which amounts to one red, one white and one green chip. The average movement associated with the red die is 3 /2, that of the two white dice is 7, and that of the three green dice is 10 /2.

As a further feature of the invention, special or premium chips are also provided, termed whip chips illustrated as a stack of yellow chips 70 in FIG. 4 and provided in a limited amount for each player. This special chip can serve many purposes. For example, it can be used during regular play, at the players discretion, or it can be saved and used by the player after he has exhausted his supply of regular chips, which will most likely occur during the homestretch, to provide variations to the finishing sequence. Associated with the whip chips 70 is a second deck of cards 71 (FIG. 7) termed whip cards, which designate the conditions of their use. When a whip chip is played, the player selects a Whip card after the roll, which will then instruct the player as to the effect of his whip chip. If he is playing a white chip with his whip chip in the finishing sequence, and if the indicia on the card 71 selected includes a whip, as shown in FIG. 7, the player also moves his piece an additional amount, for example, the number shown on the red die. Another whip card may direct the player to make a penalty move, for example, bear out. Afterwards, the regular finishing sequence can be resumed, or the rules may provide for continuous whip chip use.

To further enhance the excitement of the race and simulate more closely an actual horse race, an area of the track designated 61 on both sides of the finish line 60 is denoted by suitable indicia, the letter P in FIG. 1, as a photofinish zone. Any piece that occupies one of the spaces designated P is guaranteed a photofinish even though another piece has sufificient moves to pass completely through the photofinish zone 61. To avoid a photofinish, a piece must pass completely through the photofinish zone 61 before another piece occupies a position thereon. To decide the outcome of a photofinish, a third pack of cards 62 is provided. As illustrated in FIG. 8, each of the cards has pictured on its face a symbol of the nature of the race involved, in the particular illustrative case the head 63 of a horse, on a background of vertical lines 64, with the nose or leading edge of the symbol adjacent a particular line. In the case of an auto race, it would be the leading edge of a vehicle. The cards are arranged so that when they are aligned in a vertical row, the vertical lines are in registration, and thus the winner is the player that selected the card whose symbol is in advance of the others. For matching the cards, we prefer to provide a suitable holder, one form of which is illustrated in FIG. 9, which shows a flat frame 65 having on its front side four openings or windows with slots 66 in a side edge for inserting the cards face down when the frame is positioned with its front side illustrated in FIG. 9 facing downward. Ledges are provided alongside the upper and lower edges of each window opening to assist in aligning the cards. When all the cards are inserted, the frame 65 is inverted, rendering the faces of the cards 62 visible and indicating the winner. As will be noted in FIG. 9, the player who selected the top card would be the Winner. The second and fourth cards, whose symbols are similarly located, would constitute a dead heat and the players selecting such cards would share second place honors. Alternatively, vertical lines spaced apart the length of the cards could be provided on the board for use as guide lines between which the cards are laid to register the cards, is shown at in FIG. 1. By providing photofinish spaces on opposite sides of the finish line 60, the likelihood of a photofinish is increased and this enhances the excitement of the game derived from selecting the cards and comparing them to decide the finishing order. It will be appreciated that by increasing the number of photofinish or P spaces, the likelihood of a photofinish is increased. For example, there may be three rows of P spaces before the finish line 60 and two rows of P spaces after the finish line.

As a further feature of the invention, which may be included to increase the element of chance, I provide an additional token or counter, illustrated in FIG. 11 as a shoe 80, which is constructed to be detachably mounted on the playing pieces, for instance by hanging it on the tail of a horse. The placement of this shoe 80 is controlled by a racing luck card 20, which may, for instance, instruct the player selecting the card to place the shoe on his playing piece during the next three throws of the dice. When the shoe is worn by the piece, the piece will be capable of an altered movement as decided beforehand, for example, the ability to jump alternate spaces thus doubling its forward pace, or it may be subjected to the penalty of moving forward at only half the pace. After the specified play interval, the token is removed and the piece is restored to its normal condition.

In summary, the novel racing game comprising one or more of the above-enumerated features offers the advantage of closely simulating an actual racing contest with the contestants crowding the inside lanes along the inner rail to minimize the course length, and with the contestants blocking and boxing in one another and exercising strategical skill and control over the advancement rate of their own piece while maintaining a watchful eye on the pace of the competitors pieces. Thus, one might choose a green chip when the track ahead is clear, but a red or white chip when obstacles are encountered, and save the green chips, say, for the homestretch. The concealment of the selected chip before the dice are cast offers the opportunity to players to out-guess their competitors. Further, sufiicient other chance elements are present in the game to help offset lucky rolls of the dice and tend to equalize the chances of success of the contestants and thus enhance interest and excitement. We have found in the playing of our game that more often than not the pieces tend to congregate along the homestretch with frequent photofinish endings making for a highly exciting game.

While we have described an embodiment of our invention with an oval track, it will be appreciated that any closed shape is suitable. Also, the playing piece can be given a length filling only a single space or at least two longitudinal spaces at a time as shown at 82 in FIG. 1. The increased length tends to increase the sideways blocking action of the piece (with the rules prohibiting pieces occupying the same space or jumping an occupied space) and thereby forces the players to remain in an outer lane and thereby afford unimpeded forward movement to other pieces in an inner lane.

While we have described our invention in connection with specific embodiments and applications, other modifications thereof will be readily apparent to those skilled in this art.

What is claimed is:

1. A racing game apparatus comprising a board having pictorially represented thereon a racing course comprising plural lanes divided by transverse lines into a plurality of spaces adapted to receive plural distinctive playing pieces to be moved from space to space along the race course from a starting point thereon to a finishing line, the spaces adjacent and on both sides of the finish line hearing identical indicia [indicating that occupancy thereof under certain conditions by playing pieces involves such playing pieces in a photofinish], and a pack of photofinish cards each picturing on only one side one symbol only of the game contestants against a background of vertical lines, the number and spacing of said vertical lines being the same for all the cards, with the leading edge of the symbol on each card adjacent one of said vertical lines, the symbols on at least several of the cards having their leading edges adjacent different ones of the vertical lines and the symbols on all the cards facing in the same direction, whereby when cards are aligned with the pictured symbols visible such that all vertical lines are in registration, inspection thereof will indicate by the positions of the leading edges of the symbols the outcome of the race.

2. A racing game apparatus as set forth in claim 1 and including means separate from said board for receiving and aligning photofinish cards to decide the outcome of the race, all of said photofinish cards having equal spacing between the alignment end of the card and the adjacent vertical line.

3. A racing game apparatus comprising a board having pictorially represented thereon a racing course comprising plural lanes divided by transverse lines into a plurality of spaces adapted to receive plural distinctive playing pieces to be moved from space to space along the race course from a starting point thereon to a finishing point, at least first and second dice sets, the dice each bearing first indicia which is the same for all dice in each set but the first indicia of the first dice set being different from the first indicia of the second dice set, each of the dice bearing second indicia on their sides indicative of different numbers, the second indicia on said dice providing for each set an average number different from the other dice set, the second indicia on said second dice set providing a range of numbers some of which are greater and some of which are smaller than the maximum number provided by the second indicia on the first dice set, and a set of tokens for each set of dice, said token sets being distinguishable from each other, the first set of tokens bearing indicia matching the first indicia on said first dice set, the second set of tokens bearing indicia matching the first indicia on said second dice set, the selection of a token allowing the player to move his playing piece a number of spaces determined by the second indicia of the matching dice set.

4. A racing game apparatus as set forth in claim 3 wherein the first and second dice sets comprise dice all containing the same number of sides and indicia representing the same sequence of numerals on their sides constituting the second indicia, the first indicia consisting of colors, the number of dice in the first set differing from the number of dice in the second set.

5. A racing game apparatus as set forth in claim 3 wherein the lanes are parallel, the first indicia consisting of colors, said first dice set containing one die, said second dice set containing two dice, the dice each being six-sided and containing said second indicia representing the numerals 1 through 6 on their sides, and another die is provided having indicia for determining the order of movement of the playing pieces.

6. A racing game apparatus as set forth in claim 3 and further comprising third sets of dice and tokens and six dice being divided into said first, second and third sets containing one, two, and three dice, respectively, the third dice set being related to the second dice set in the same manner as the second dice set is related to the first dice set, and said third set of tokens bearing indicia matching the first indicia on said third dice set.

7. A racing game apparatus as set forth in claim 6 wherein the course contains indicia representing different starting points for races of different lengths and provided on the board is a chart containing indicia relating the length of the race to be run to the number of tokens of each set to be distributed to the players.

8. A racing game apparatus as set forth in claim 3 wherein the first indicia consists of colors, each set contains at least one die, the die in one set has more sides than the die in the other set and the indicated numbers are consecutive, the die with more sides having on its sides every number on the sides of the die with fewer sides and the remaining sides on the die with more sides containing higher numbers than on the other sides.

9. A racing game apparatus as set forth in claim 3 and further comprising third sets of dice and tokens with the dice sets containing one, two, and three dice, respectively, the third dice set being related to the second dice set in the same manner as the second dice set is related to the first dice set, the first indicia comprises coloring, said third token set bears indicia matching first indicia on said third dice set, the racing course measured along tokens.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS Cowan 273-134 Rottenbur-g 273-134 Mosse 273-134 X Wetzel 273-134 Brost 273-134 1 0 2,823,919 2/ 1958 Scruggs 273-134 3,057,623 10/1962 Barnes 273-134 FOREIGN PATENTS 5 966,912 3/1950 France.

601,939 5/ 1948 Great Britain. 626,731 7/ 1949 Great Britain. 846,712 6/ 1939 France.

10 DELBERT B. LOWE, Primary Examiner U.S. C1.X.R. 273-137, 146

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U.S. Classification273/246, 273/146
International ClassificationA63F3/00
Cooperative ClassificationA63F3/00006, A63F3/00082
European ClassificationA63F3/00A10