The crowd chanted fiercely as the horses pranced in excitement, the chariot drivers holding the beasts back with everything they had. Knowing that every minute more they could wait would be another minute they lived before the death that may come in a matter of moments. For chariot races were deadly and some of these chariot drivers may not return to the stable of the Circus Maximus.
These chariots were made to be very light weighted so the horse carrying it would be able to run twice as fast. With the chariots being light weighted and not having a seat for the driver to be seated, some drivers would fall out of the chariots they were driving. Some would get tangled in the reins and fall out of the chariot thus being drug to death by the horse running through the course. The driver may also have fallen out of the chariot and ended up being ran over by the rest of the chariots racing by, traveling too fast to stop. The men driving the chariots were most of the time slaves or others who simply wanted to race and enjoyed the sport.
Chariots were used for many other situations but the most famous purpose in Roman times was chariot racing, done in the Circus Maximus. The Circus Maximus was a large oval shaped arena with seating area for over 15,000 people on each side of it. The far end of the arena was full of stables and starting boxes for all of the horses. While around the rest of “The Circus” was seating area for the thousands of spectators. This was just one of the many things done with chariots back in Roman times and one of the two I will explain. (PBS, 2013)
The chariot served as a great war weapon or device. In this matter it was still drawn by one or more horses, but usually had two riders in the chariot. One rider would direct the horse that was carrying the chariot while the other used a weapon (usually a bow) to shoot at the enemy. At many times his would have been a struggle as well, seeing how chariots can’t move through tight spaces to get away. Even though this may have been difficult it helped the Romans out many times.(PBS, 2013)