Stunt Rider Motorcycle Cart is Good, Clean and Dangerous Fun
The oldest known chariots date back to around 2000 BC. J.-C., the horse-drawn vehicle being both a vital weapon of war and a useful means of transport. These days, the chariot is rarely seen outside of harness racing at racetracks. However, an Australian stuntman named Jack Field decided the tank needed a comeback, this time with motorcycles instead of horses.
Field’s tank consists of a pair of Husqvarna Svartpilen 401 motorcycles, strapped together with a steel frame and pulling a two-wheeled tank behind. Field controls the bikes with a pair of rigid control arms connected to the handlebars, one mounting a throttle, the other with a brake lever. Like any other tank, Field simply stands on the platform, holding the “reins”.
Motorcycle chariots have a proud history, particularly in Australia, with the sport peaking in popularity in the 1920s to 1930s before largely dying out. The spectacle of brave racers piloting tanks pulled by one to four motorcycles remains a niche feature of many track stunt shows and similar events. Indeed, even the Top Gear Live Show once featured a scooter tank race featuring the show’s three hosts.
Safety features don’t really come into play when it comes to motorcycle dollies. Any accident is likely to send the pilot flying through the air on a hard or other surface. Likewise, the vehicle’s clumsy and limited controls only make piloting the tank more difficult. These factors are probably largely responsible for what prevented motorcycle tank racing from overtaking MotoGP in popularity in the organized motorsport world. Instead, chariot racing on motorcycles is more of a demonstration event, often complete with pleasing old-era costumes, as seen at the 1933 Police and Fire Carnival in Sydney.