There are 2 main definitions of track in English:

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track 1

Syllabification: track


1A rough path or minor road, typically one beaten by use rather than constructed: follow the track to the farm a forest track
More example sentences
  • Older people recall walking directly over the frozen snow from point to point rather than following the track of the road hidden beneath the snow.
  • The Park offers the complete day out with an extensive range of waymarked paths, picnic areas, forest roads and tracks.
  • He would trace the paths of tracks and highways and railroads, and at night, while he lay waiting for sleep, he would recite the names of maps in his deep, soft voice.
path, pathway, footpath, lane, trail, route, way, course
1.1A prepared course or circuit for athletes, horses, motor vehicles, bicycles, or dogs to race on: a Formula One Grand Prix track
More example sentences
  • The sale was conducted in a tent on the Saratoga Race Course backstretch with sale horses stabled at the track.
  • The action came during Thursday's meeting of the Oklahoma Horse Racing Commission when all three of the state's tracks got racing days.
  • The October yearling sale will be held during the track's annual fall race meeting.
course, racetrack, raceway;
1.2The sport of running on a track.
Example sentences
  • Growing up, he loved sports, participating in track and basketball.
  • My dad would take her fishing and get her involved in sports like track and basketball.
  • Some may say that track is an individual sport, I tend to disagree.
1.3 (usually tracks) A mark or line of marks left by a person, animal, or vehicle in passing: he followed the tracks made by the police cars in the snow
More example sentences
  • We see animal and bird tracks similarly marked, animals and birds themselves, often in outline, infilled, or as stick figures.
  • A great stride forward was made in recognising Aboriginal dreaming tracks, marking the journey of spiritual ancestors in central Australia.
  • Nearing the border, they left the tarmac of the main road and began to bounce across the rutted sand, following in the tracks of the vehicles which had already passed the same way.
traces, marks, prints, footprints, trail, spoor
1.4The course or route followed by someone or something (used especially in talking about their pursuit by others): I didn’t want the Russians on my track
More example sentences
  • And, even if I can't follow his peripatetic tracks around the globe, I can enjoy his travels vicariously.
  • I follow his tracks, cursing and grumbling: Where does he think he's going in this weather?
  • Complications began to arise as he followed her tracks.
course, path, line, route, way, trajectory, wake
1.5A course of action; a way of proceeding: defense budgeting and procurement do not move along different tracks from defense policy as a whole
More example sentences
  • In Western Europe, the defence and revision of the myths have run along different tracks.
  • In recent decades, marching band traditions in the United States have evolved along decidedly different cultural tracks.
  • The two painters went on very different tracks afterward.
2A continuous line of rails on a railroad.
Example sentences
  • Until Beeching there was a twin track railway line along here.
  • Why it was sent over the Hudson River bridge onto the single track main line I don't know.
  • Motorists watched in amazement as a 30 ft fountain of water caused an explosion on the electricity lines above a railway track.
rail, line
2.1A metal or plastic strip or rail from which a curtain or spotlight may be hung or fitted.
Example sentences
  • Spotlights move in a track that's mounted diagonally, following the angle of the stairs overhead.
  • The platform was placed on wheels, which were free to move along a level metal track.
  • Wax curtain rods and tracks before hanging curtains, as this will help them slide more easily.
2.2A continuous articulated metal band around the wheels of a heavy vehicle such as a tank or bulldozer, intended to facilitate movement over rough or soft ground.
Example sentences
  • He entered the circular chamber in a wheelchair, without wheels, instead, tracks like a tank, to push him along.
  • A vehicle equipped with band tracks will weigh about a ton less than a similar vehicle equipped with metal tracks, which will make it easier to transport by air.
  • Though other tracked vehicles can tear up soft terrain, our tracks steer much the same as a tire-equipped vehicle.
2.3 Electronics A continuous line of copper or other conductive material on a printed circuit board, used to connect parts of a circuit.
Example sentences
  • Woven into the jacket are electrically conductive fabric tracks which connect the chip module to a fabric keyboard and built-in speakers in the helmet.
  • In addition, the printed circuit board comprises a flat flexible support on which the conductor tracks run from the stator to the rotor.
  • We connect them together with wires or copper tracks to make circuits, but it's the components that do all the work.
2.4 Sailing A strip on the mast, boom, or deck of a yacht along which a slide attached to a sail can be moved, used to adjust the position of the sail.
Example sentences
  • The recent damage to the track on the mast where the mainsail is attached is the main focus of her concern, with some tough miles still to come.
3A recording of one song or piece of music: the CD contains early Elvis Presley tracks
More example sentences
  • They composed the songs, recorded the tracks, edited the music and did all the audio engineering work necessary.
  • The next song, the title track, melds another downtempo beat with a gentle guitar melody.
  • Last time out, I discovered a cheap way to do a re-mix, or record an extra track overdubbed onto your music.
song, recording, number, piece
3.1A lengthwise strip of magnetic tape containing one sequence of signals.
Example sentences
  • High track density magnetic media with pitted optical servo tracks and method for stamping the tracks on the media.
  • Multiple digital read channels may be used to read multiple tracks of an optical disk simultaneously.
  • A recording surface is segmented into a plurality of radial zones each containing a plurality of concentric tracks on which data may be recorded.
3.2The soundtrack of a film or video.
Example sentences
  • On disc one you get the feature film and commentary tracks.
  • I really hate it when you can't select between audio tracks during the film.
  • The track for the film is mono, so you're getting about as good as you're gonna get with that kind of mix.
4The transverse distance between a vehicle’s wheels.
Example sentences
  • Several suggestions were made by Ford engineers to improve its stability, including widening the track width of the vehicle.
  • The footprint of a vehicle will be calculated by multiplying its wheelbase by its track width.
  • It also has a wider track by two inches, although the body width is not much different.
5US A group in which schoolchildren of the same age and ability are taught.
Example sentences
  • What should you consider when choosing a high school diploma track?
  • Approximately half the pupils in this study were in a regular academic track, while the remaining subjects were in a slower track.
  • It illustrates the high price that pupils pay for being excluded from the academic track, even when they are some way down the ability distribution within their birth cohort.


[with object] Back to top  
1Follow the course or trail of (someone or something), typically in order to find them or note their location at various points: secondary radars that track the aircraft in flight he tracked Anna to her room
More example sentences
  • Alexander does it on foot, following meandering game trails and tracking the animals.
  • Researchers have found a way to track people's mouse movements in a bid to see how they behave when using the Internet.
  • I want something that tracks my eye movement on screen, and a key combination which will jump the cursor to where I am looking.
follow, trail, trace, pursue, shadow, stalk, keep an eye on, keep in sight
informal tail
1.1Follow and note the course or progress of: they are tracking the girth and evolution of stars
More example sentences
  • The agency has created a linked system that connects its careers service with school and social services so that an individual's progress can be tracked and mapped more efficiently.
  • You can also find programs to monitor and track your child's online activity.
  • The progress of various dust control initiatives can be tracked against these on-site measurements.
1.2 [no object] Follow a particular course: the storm was tracking across the ground at 30 mph
More example sentences
  • The gallery is a short walk from campus - just follow the train tracks southbound.
  • The tropical storm is tracking toward the Gulf of Mexico.
  • It could be days, for all we know, as far as what the storm is tracking at this point.
1.3(Of a stylus) follow (a groove in a record).
1.4 [no object] (Of a film or television camera) move in relation to the subject being filmed: the camera eventually tracked away
[With reference to early filming when a camera was mobile by means of a track]
More example sentences
  • A line of description at the bottom of the last page that sends the camera slowly tracking back… so the audience can catch its breath gather its thoughts, and leave the cinema with dignity.
  • Move with your camera and take tracking or dollying shots.
  • Suppose the camera is tracking in, following a bad guy's footsteps.
1.5 (track something up) North American Leave a trail of dirty footprints on a surface.
Example sentences
  • My cats are tracking up the place with little muddy paw prints.
  • We had to hit the shower and put our clothes into the wash immediately to keep them from staining and to keep us from tracking up the whole house with mud and crud.
  • But I have already tracked up the floor with footprints, etc.
1.6 (track something in) Leave a trail of dirt, debris, or snow from one’s feet: the road salt I’d tracked in from the street
More example sentences
  • At her yell, a large, thick figure came in through the door amidst a large storm's gust of pure white snow, tracking it in with him and battling the wind's strength as he tried to close the door.
  • They rolled out a carpet on my floors so they weren't tracking dirt in every trip in or out of the house.
  • The sickbay floor was spotted with flooring cement and there is a nice brown track where the construction people were tracking dirt in from outside.
2 [no object] (Of wheels) run so that the back ones are exactly in the track of the front ones.
Example sentences
  • I've just had my wheels tracked 'cause I thought that was the problem.
  • Oh my car has stopped oversteering after I got my wheels tracked.
  • They balanced and tracked the wheels to no avail.
3 [no object] Electronics (Of a tunable circuit or component) vary in frequency in the same way as another circuit or component, so that the frequency difference between them remains constant.
Example sentences
  • The system will contain a more sophisticated heading sensor as well as more advanced tracking and stabilizing circuits.
  • For nearly four decades chips have tracked Moore's Law, doubling their transistor count every two years.
4Assign (a student) to a course of study according to ability.
Example sentences
  • Tracking pupils by skill level as early as age 9 worked.
  • In seven of the eight studies, students reported more favorable attitudes in the specific subjects they were tracked in.


in one's tracks
informal Where one or something is at that moment; suddenly: Turner immediately stopped dead in his tracks
More example sentences
  • Suddenly, he stops in his tracks as if he is getting a message from the great beyond.
  • Suddenly, I stopped in my tracks, causing some guy of roller blades behind me to serve and hit a rock on the pavement.
  • He suddenly stopped dead in his tracks with an extremely amused look on his face.
keep (or lose) track of
Keep (or fail to keep) fully aware of or informed about: she had lost all track of time and had fallen asleep
More example sentences
  • Plus of course billing information needs to be kept track of.
  • Watching the media and keeping track of what they think is important news.
  • As you're all well aware because you kept track of us all over the place, we searched on land, we searched in lakes, we searched in rivers.
monitor, follow, keep up with, keep an eye on;
keep in touch with, keep up to date with
informal keep tabs on
make tracks (for)
informal Leave hurriedly (for a place).
Example sentences
  • This is an uplifting theatrical experience that is well worth making tracks for.
  • At about 9 p.m., when it was obvious that there wasn't going to be anything terribly stimulating going on, Shane and Junior started making tracks.
  • Meanwhile, anxious Americans unable to find a flu shot at home are making tracks north.
off the beaten track
see beaten.
on the right (or wrong) track
Acting or thinking in a way that is likely to result in success (or failure): we are on the right track for continued growth
More example sentences
  • Victory in last weekend's European Cup final when he captained his country to a fifth success suggests he is on the right track.
  • More impressive, though, than any fanatical power of endurance was his ability to see he was on the wrong track, admit he was mistaken and try a different course of action.
  • Only the results will tell us if Labour is on the right track.
on track
Acting or thinking in a way that is likely to achieve what is required: formulas for keeping the economy on track
More example sentences
  • The first is that the economy may be on track this year but the public finances are not.
  • If one patient runs late another will run early and the schedule should stay on track, more or less.
  • More fundamental are policies to get the economy on track so that there are jobs for all.
on course, on an even keel, on schedule
the wrong (or right) side of the tracks
informal A poor, less prestigious (or wealthy, prestigious) part of town.
Example sentences
  • Meanwhile, the mother, who has become a star of the stage, unwittingly meets her orphan son on one of her frequent trips to the wrong side of the tracks to provide charity to poor children.
  • Over the 20th century blacks in larger towns found themselves increasingly forced to live on the wrong side of the tracks.
  • He is a country boy from the wrong side of the tracks, while she is a city gal with a pedigree.

Phrasal verbs

track someone/something down
Find someone or something after a thorough or difficult search.
Example sentences
  • He lay unconscious for five hours before a 40-strong search team tracked him down.
  • The medals of a war hero have been returned to his family after a four-month police search to track them down.
  • After she died, I tracked down what happened after I left my home.
track up
(Of a horse at the trot) create sufficient impulsion in its hindquarters to cause the hind feet to step onto or slightly ahead of the former position of the forefeet.


Late 15th century (in the sense 'trail, marks left behind'): the noun from Old French trac, perhaps from Low German or Dutch trek 'drawing, pull'; the verb (current senses dating from the mid 16th century) from French traquer or directly from the noun.

  • A 15th-century word that perhaps came from the same Dutch source as trek. The first meaning was ‘a mark or trail left by a person, animal or vehicle’—the sort of tracks used by trains was first described in 1805. The expression the wrong side of the tracks, ‘a poor or less prestigious part of a town’, originated in America from the idea of a town divided by a railroad track and dates from the early 20th century.

Words that rhyme with track

aback, alack, attack, back, black, brack, clack, claque, crack, Dirac, drack, flack, flak, hack, jack, Kazakh, knack, lack, lakh, mac, mach, Nagorno-Karabakh, pack, pitchblack, plaque, quack, rack, sac, sack, shack, shellac, slack, smack, snack, stack, tach, tack, thwack, vac, wack, whack, wrack, yak, Zack
Definition of track in:
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There are 2 main definitions of track in English:

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track 2 Syllabification: track


[with object]
Tow (a boat) along a waterway from the bank.


Early 18th century: apparently from Dutch trekken 'to draw, pull, or travel'. The change in the vowel was due to association with track1.

  • A 15th-century word that perhaps came from the same Dutch source as trek. The first meaning was ‘a mark or trail left by a person, animal or vehicle’—the sort of tracks used by trains was first described in 1805. The expression the wrong side of the tracks, ‘a poor or less prestigious part of a town’, originated in America from the idea of a town divided by a railroad track and dates from the early 20th century.

Definition of track in:
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