An American and two Spaniards were impaled through the cobbled streets of Pamplona during a dangerous fifth run of Spain’s famous Running of the Bulls on Monday.
The bulls split into separate groups and one of them followed the others, making the course even more unpredictable for runners trying to avoid them.
Several daredevils slipped or tripped while the bulls charged through the narrow lanes of the Bull Run route.
Television images showed a bull repeatedly throwing a runner in the air.
A 29-year-old Spaniard was impaled in the knee and two other men were impaled at the end of the run in the northern city’s bullring, the Navarre regional government said in a statement.
One of them was a 25-year-old from Florida who was impaled in his leg and the other is a 29-year-old Spaniard who was impaled in the groin, he added.
Three other runners were hospitalized with fall injuries during the run.
The six bulls and six oxen raced the roughly 850 meters (2,800 feet) from a corral to the city’s bullring in three minutes and 12 seconds.
The bulls that run each morning are killed by professional matadors in afternoon bullfights.
The festival’s first impaling of the year occurred on Saturday when a bull’s horn stabbed a 39-year-old Spaniard in the buttocks.
Monday was the fifth of the festival’s eight scheduled bull runs. Drinking, eating and concerts follow for the rest of the day.
The nationally televised early morning runs are the culmination of the nine-day festival made famous by Ernest Hemingway’s 1926 novel The Sun Also Rises.
Officials canceled the hugely popular event in 2020 and 2021 because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the first time the festival has been canceled since the 1936-1939 Spanish Civil War.
Sixteen people have died running the bulls since 1910. The last fatality in 2009 hit a 27-year-old Spaniard in the throat, heart and lungs.
His parents left a bouquet of flowers along the route of the bull run on Sunday to mark the 13th anniversary of his death.
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