Six hospitalised after fifth bull run in Spain

PAMPLONA, Spain (AP) — One person was gored in the arm and five others were injured during the fifth bull run of this year’s San Fermin festival in Pamplona, officials in the northern Spanish city said yesterday.

Regional hospital spokesman Tomás Belzunegui said that the six were in need of hospital care after being injured during the race along the 850-metre cobbled-street course to the bullring.

The most serious injury was suffered by a 27-year-old man from the Spanish city of Valencia who was gored in the arm. The other injuries were from blows received in falls as the crowds of runners tumble out of the way of the much faster bulls.

The morning’s run was preceded by a protest by some of the “runners,” who sat on the street before the bulls were released. They consider that this year’s bull runs have lacked the usual thrills because the bulls have largely stayed behind the large steers which guide them through the narrow, twisting streets to Pamplona’s bullring, where the bulls were killed in bullfights later in the day. An adherent has also been applied for over a decade to the cobblestoned streets which helps prevent the animals from slipping and being separated from the pack.

The run featuring bulls from the Victoriano del Río Cortés cattle breeder stayed together through most of yesterday’s run, which was the longest of this year’s festival so far at two minutes, 49 seconds.

The nine-day San Fermin fiesta that was immortalised by Ernest Hemingway in his novel The Sun Also Rises attracts about one million spectators every year. Most come to party late into the night before watching hundreds test their speed and daring against the bulls each morning.

Participants run next to Vitoriano del Rio Cortes fighting bulls on the fifth bull run of the San Fermin festival in Pamplona. – AFP