“Let’s Go” – Walt Disney’s Big Track Meet Game

Donald Duck, Mickey Mouse, Pluto and Goofy are the ‘athletes’ trying for the Championship. Someone has given José (Joe) Carioca a pair of starter pistols and he yells “Let’s Go!” But will it be the natural athletic ability of each contestant or the mysterious Speedometer that determines the winner? You’ll have to play Walt Disney’s Big Track Meet game to find out!

This game is for up to four players but no age limit is given. So I guess everyone can get some exercise with this game!

This game was manufactured in Canada by Ontex Games, which seems to be a French company. Not much is evident about the company after an Internet search and I assume they are no longer in business.

How old is the game? As is the case with many board games the manufacturer doesn’t put a date on the box. That would help, but no such luck here! We can guess based on the characters used in the artwork. Other than the four main characters and the Starter Bird, we have Pinocchio, Geppetto and Figaro, Bambi and Thumper, the Three Little Pigs, Mickey’s nephews Morty and Ferdie Fieldmouse, and Donald’s nephews Huey, Dewey, and Louie. The newest of these characters is José Carioca from early 1943 (he first appeared in the package film Saludos Amigos). But he appeared again in The Three Caballeros in early 1944, although that movie was released in North America in 1945. 

The box has the artwork wrapped around the cardboard like a sticker, which makes it quite early, as newer printing simply puts the image directly on the boxes. The patina also dates the game to an earlier time. Also, the game pieces are generic and made of wood. Later games would have had plastic game pieces molded into each of the characters. The style of the artwork is also in keeping with the 1940s style of Disney animation.

So this game could have been produced during WW2. The next animated movie to introduce a character that could have been included in this game was Cinderella in 1950. Being as she is missing, we may also guess that the game was made no later than 1950. Isn’t sleuthing fun?

The game also carries the trademark of Walt Disney Productions (1929-1986) which validates the age range for the game.

I like to include the instructions to any game I feature. I feel this is especially helpful if the rules are printed on a separate piece of paper as these often are lost from these older games. But in this case, the rules are handily printed on the inside of the box lid.

Game play is simple. You spin to see who goes first and then move whatever amount of spaces the spinner, or Speedometer, indicates. Landing between dark red lines either enforces a penalty or gives a reward, like moving ahead extra spaces. You simply keep spinning and moving until one player reaches the finish line and wins the track meet. The prize, in case you were wondering, is $1,000 in fictional play money. Don’t spend it all in one fictional place.

One discrepancy from the box cover art to the game board art is the Starter. One has José Carioca firing the gun, while the other has Minnie Mouse doing the honors. I notice these things. It’s a curse.

Are you ready to finally win that Track and Field medal? Then… Let’s Go!

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