Pamplonada en Tlaxcala and Corrida del Toros (Bullfights)



            October 28, opening day of the annual fair in Tlaxcala, Mexico.  This page shows pictures from the "Pamplonada en Tlaxcala", what is supposed to be a running of the bulls just like Pamplona, Spain, and the Corrida del Toros, or Bullfights. 

            The "Pamplonada" was nothing like what occurs in Spain.  The bullfights, however, were pretty authentic.  If you don't like seeing large bulls being slaughtered for sport stop looking after you see the picture of the bullfighting ring. 




Alpura, a popular milk brand here. You can see the large fence that keeps the bulls away from the spectators.

Press row getting ready for the Pamplonada, or running of the bulls.

John and Jane, a couple from my Spanish class.

Girl with camera, just before the Pamplonada event.

Happy baby with daddy.

The bulls were released and are about 50 yards from these guys. Notice that the fat guy to the left starts to run before everyone else.

The bulls are closer now...

This first bull was on fire. Most others were slow and seemed sedated. Pamplona, Spain, has nothing to worry about as far as competition here.

More Bull. The red and white ones were like docile little puppies and just got in the way of the few aggressive bulls. The runners are long gone.

After the bulls were gone these kids and many others were excited to see the beginning of the parade.

This parade lasted about an hour.

Colorful dancers.

Fat guy with a little sax.

I think this was the gay pride section of the parade.

The really old bell tower at the edge of the bullring.

I sat next to a professional photographer from Guatemala who let me borrow his wide angle lense for this shot of the whole ring.

One of three matadors preparing for the fights.

The first bull comes running into the ring and charges at the matador's teammates, who run and hide behind one of these barriers.

One of the matador's teammates going for a hiding place. The matador watches during this part of the event to see how the bull moves and reacts.

Another teammate testing the bull.

The padded horse caries a guy that uses this spear to cut those muscles that help the bull to throw his head up when going after the matador.

It's more difficult for the bull to hold his head up after this. It helps to weaken the bull so the matador will more likely dominate in the fight.

Notice the left front foot of the bull - this can be a sign of a weaker bull; a bull that tries to intimidate a predator rather than simply charging.

Ole!! That's what they yell when a matador draws a bull close with his cape.

Now the matador comes in with 'espaldas', or 'banderillas', colorful spears that he tries to thrust between the shoulder blades of the bull.

One of the matadore's teammates gets a taste of the bulls horns but gets away before the bull gets to deliver any more punishment.

This first bull has got 4 banderillas in his upper back.






The next step is for the matador to thrust his sword downward between the shoulder blades. If he does well it will pierce the bulls heart.

If the sword is on target the bull will fall immediately. This bull fell within a minute or so, which is not perfect, but better than many.

Within a minute of the sword.

This guy comes in to cut the brain stem of the bull to make sure he is completely paralized. Some say the bull is still fully concious, not dead.

This guy get's an ear (left hand).