The arena at Nimes

Last Saturday just passed I was at the Feria de Nimes in southern France and spent a few hours inside the Roman arena at the centre of town watching la Corrida – the bullfights. I’ll post a few more thoughts and photos from the day here soon but here want to show a few photos of what happens when a banderillero gets it very wrong.

In the second of the three parts of a the traditional Spanish bullfight – known as the tercio de banderillas (“the third of banderillas”), three banderilleros each attempt to stab two banderillas –  sharply barbed sticks – into the bull’s shoulders.

This is one of the most dangerous – and spectacular – parts of the bullfight, and one where the bull definitely has opportunities to exact some measure of revenge upon the banderilleros.

Stabbing the banderilloas

The bandillero successfully drives the barbed banderillas home into the bull’s shoulders.

Bandillero in trouble

But did not move far enough away from the bull’s horns and is tossed like a cheap salad.

Not the best view of the bull for a bandillero

Then trampled under the bull’s hooves. But survives to take part in the parade at the end of the fight – if not a little bruised, bloodied and battered.

After the fight - Matadore de toros and the three banderillos