Sled Dog Mechanics And Dynamics

About SEPP, Roland Lombard and Charley Belford

Some notes I made at a Siberian Evaluation Pilot Project dog test and dinner in Minnesota around 1988. Doc
Belford and Roland Lombard were both present and engaged in this project, although Lombard was showing signs of Alzheimer’s disease.


Dog that leads with left front leg runs best on right

Dog that leads with right front leg runs best on left

“Rolling power” vs. pulling power


Front layback 35 degrees

Pelvis 30-40 degrees

Front feet must be turned out to avoid interference… toe out 10-15 degrees

Writing about this recalls to mind the image of Doc Lombard driving a team of dogs in races in which we both participated. George Attla had a characteristic style of pedaling partly explained by the fact that his right leg was fused at the knee. Lombard’s pedaling style was quite different. He seemed to be stomping in the snow without really swinging his leg as Attla did in what appeared to be a smooth, efficient and effective movement to assist the dogs. I think Lombard’s explanation was that he was lightening the load on the sled and dogs more than pushing the sled forward. It looked to be more jerky and disruptive for the dogs.

At some later time Ed Moody the musher and sled builder told me that Doc Lombard’s racing success was partly due to his handler/assistant Stubby Saxon. Perhaps some reader can fill in details on this subject.




2 thoughts on “Sled Dog Mechanics And Dynamics

  1. Pingback: Every Dog Team Must Jump The Same, George | Everything I Learned From My Sled Dogs And More!

  2. Pingback: Updates 1/24/2014 | Everything I Learned From My Sled Dogs And More!

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