My Chariot Awaits

Posted in News By Fanatical Fulmer

Mar 12, 2018 11:24:36 AM

I recently saw a quote on the movie site Fandango, that read: “Chariots are like the motorcycles of the ancient world: They’re lean, mean, tricky to control, and people look pretty epic riding them.”

I loved the quote, and typed it in to see who said it. Instead of finding that, I found multiple sites telling the story of motorcycle chariot racing, where people drove chariots with motorcycles taking the place of horses.

Chariots rolled through the Middle East for more than 1,000 years, but never did I imagine there was a sport that tied together motorcycling and chariots back in the 1920s and 1930s.

The make-shift chariots were constructed of wine barrels with automobile wheels attached. Motorcycles were attached in front. Ben Hur wannabes dressed in full roman-inspired garb were at the reins.

The first chariots used a single motorcycle manned by a driver. As the sport grew, chariots added multiple bikes and no longer used drivers.

Two or more motorcycles were connected to each another with a metal frame resembling the yoke that originally connected the chariot to the horse. The front forks were tied together with a steering linkage that shifted back and forth by the leather reins held by the driver. Changing gears was impossible.

I’m not sure if anyone still holds these types of races, but it would be awesome to see. As for being the helmsman of a chariot, I’ll leave that to the Ben Hur wannabes. Two wheels is all I need.

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