—n. 1. a contest of speed, as in running, riding, driving, or sailing.
2. races,a series of races, usually of horses or dogs, run at a set time over a regular course: They spent a day at the races. 3. any contest or competition, esp. to achieve superiority: the arms race; the presidential race. 4. urgent need, responsibility, effort, etc., as when time is short or a solution is imperative: the race to find an effective vaccine. 5. onward movement; an onward or regular course.
6. the course of time.
7. the course of life or a part of life.
8. Geol. a. a strong or rapid current of water, as in the sea or a river.
b. the channel or bed of such a current or of any stream.
9. an artificial channel leading water to or from a place where its energy is utilized.
10. the current of water in such a channel.
11. Also called raceway.Mach.a channel, groove, or the like, for sliding or rolling a part or parts, as the balls of a ball bearing.
12. Textiles. a. the float between adjacent rows of pile.
b. See race plate.
—v.i. 1. to engage in a contest of speed; run a race.
2. to run horses or dogs in races; engage in or practice horse racing or dog racing.
3. to run, move, or go swiftly.
4. (of an engine, wheel, etc.) to run with undue or uncontrolled speed when the load is diminished without corresponding diminution of fuel, force, etc.
—v.t. 1. to run a race against; try to beat in a contest of speed: I'll race you to the water. 2. to enter (a horse, car, track team, or the like) in a race or races.
3. to cause to run, move, or go at high speed: to race a motor.
Pronunciation: (rās),[key] —n. 1. a group of persons related by common descent or heredity.
2. a population so related.
3. Anthropol. a. any of the traditional divisions of humankind, the commonest being the Caucasian, Mongoloid, and Negro, characterized by supposedly distinctive and universal physical characteristics: no longer in technical use.
b. an arbitrary classification of modern humans, sometimes, esp. formerly, based on any or a combination of various physical characteristics, as skin color, facial form, or eye shape, and now frequently based on such genetic markers as blood groups.
c. a human population partially isolated reproductively from other populations, whose members share a greater degree of physical and genetic similarity with one another than with other humans.
4. a group of tribes or peoples forming an ethnic stock: the Slavic race. 5. any people united by common history, language, cultural traits, etc.: the Dutch race. 6. the human race or family; humankind: Nuclear weapons pose a threat to the race. 7. Zool.a variety; subspecies.
8. a natural kind of living creature: the race of fishes. 9. any group, class, or kind, esp. of persons: Journalists are an interesting race. 10. the characteristic taste or flavor of wine.