Winning the Race in Backgammon
Many games in backgammon end up in a race to bear off the last checker. That is the initial idea behind this game but in reality there are more backgammon games that end in dropping a doubling offer. But that does not necessarily imply that a race is the only strategic option in backgammon. In fact there are other strategies that can be used in this game. Nevertheless, players who know how to win a race have the upper hand when such a situation arises.
How do backgammon players recognize a race in this game? The indicators are easy, in fact there is only one thing you should check to figure out if a race is now at hand. If all your checkers have cleared any and all contact with opposing pieces you now enter the racing phase.
At this point when a race is imminent you should know how to handle your checkers. Another thing you should be aware of is that you or your opponent can and should offer to double the stakes in case you see that you have a chance to gain the upper hand. The doubling cube becomes a necessary part of this phase of the game.
Before the doubling cube was introduced to the game, many games had to end with a race even if there was already a clear winner. Players were forced to finish the game to the very end. With the introduction of the doubling cube, you can end a game immediately by offering to double and force your opponent to pass. That definitely saves you time especially when you'll only be getting one match point for the current game.
As a short recap, an essential element of a backgammon race is the cube action. You should know when to offer the cube to your opponent and when to accept or pass on the offer. Obviously, one tool will become very useful when determining if you have a chance to catch up in a backgammon race, which is the pip count.
The pip count is simply counting the number of points all your checkers have to go through in order for them to be borne off the backgammon board. This is done manually when you play the game live, which means you also have to adjust your pip count to wastage. But when you play in online tournaments, you won't have to worry about the pip count because you'll have there on the gaming screen.
With an adjusted pip count you should know when is it right to offer the cube. Basically you should offer to double the stakes in a backgammon race when you are around four points ahead. In case you have a chance to redouble, you should do so when you have an adjusted pip count lead of three. Understanding the cube action in a backgammon race is the secret to win this type of game.