Taking a good longitudinal braking performance on flat and level road of tractor and semi-trailer combination as a target, in order to achieve an ideal braking force distribution among axles, while the vehicle deceleration is just depend on the driver's intention, not affected by the variation of semi-trailer mass, the paper proposes a model based vehicle mass identification and braking force distribution strategy. The strategy identifies the driver's braking intention via braking pedal, estimates semi-trailer's mass during the building process of braking pressure in brake chamber, distributes braking force among axles by using the estimated mass. And a double closed-loop regulation of the vehicle deceleration and utilization adhesion coefficient of each axle is presented, in order to eliminate the bad effect of mass estimation error, and enhance the robustness of the whole algorithm. A simulation is conducted by utilizing MATLAB/Simulink and TruckSim. The simulation result shows that: the algorithm can eliminate the effect on vehicle deceleration caused by the variation of semi-trailer mass; while an optimal braking force distribution is achieved among axles, thus braking performance is guaranteed.