Several weeks ago, we began a read-along of sorts: small weekly morsels comprising the chapter on tandem driving in the first volume of  The Sports Library (by Mr. T. F. Dale), published in 1899.

If you didn’t start reading along with us from the beginning, you can catch up by reading part of the book’s introduction (and the introduction to our look back at this nineteenth-century book) and parts one, two, three, four, five, and six of Chapter 10.

Today, the seventh part:

… One of the great secrets of tandem-driving is a light hand, another is to keep your hands still. I have found in practice that many animals which pull hard in the saddle or in the wheel, will not pull an ounce as leaders in a tandem. Then if you want your team to go well and look well, keep your hands still, for when once you have the team straight the reins should need little or no changing. A tandem team can be turned with the slightest movement of the wrist, for when once the horses are going it is the very lightest and handiest of teams.

Half the trouble and embarrassment in driving comes from pulling too hard, and in driving tandem it is well to recollect how slight a touch is needed. Women, few if any of whom have the strength requisite to drive four horses, can and do drive a tandem beautifully. And it is most delightful to drive a free-going tandem, with horses in a straight line trotting out freely, their hooves rattling gaily on the road.