put off the track

put (one) off the track

To misdirect one away from their pursuit; to steer one's investigation or suspicions in the wrong direction. The mafia accountant managed to put the authorities off the track of the mob's money laundering for years, but they finally caught up with him after an anonymous source tipped them off. That outlier data put me off the track for a while, but I think my research is back on solid ground now.
See also: off, put, track

put someone off the track

 and put someone off the trail
to cause someone to lose a trail that is being followed. (See also put someone off the scent; throw someone off the track.) A distraction put me off the track and I almost got lost in the jungle. I was following an escaped convict and something put me off the trail.
See also: off, put, track
References in periodicals archive ?
In 2011, the PIA suffered a loss of Rs 1.5 billion per month while Pakistan Railways also faced huge losses on many counts and a number of trains were either permanently put off the track or temporarily disbanded.
The Aintree second favourite was put off the track for 42 days after the stewards ruled that he had been schooled in public at Naas on Sunday when he finished last of seven.
GHOST hunters were put off the track by Scotland's national drink.