Bullfighting is an art and
has been around for centuries. Portuguese style bloodless bullfighting
is practiced here in California. The bulls are not killed and are
not bled to slow them down either. Some will say that this is harder
than the traditional type of bullfighting because the bulls are at
their best and not weakened.
Centuries ago, Andalusians and
the only breed of horses used for bullfighting. Today, different
breeds of horses have been discovered as potential for bullfighting
and cross breeding is becoming a common practice amongst the breeders.
x Quarter Horse), Anglo-Arabs (Thoroughbred x Arabians), and Arabs
x Lusitanos are just a few that are becoming well-known in the mainstream,
due to the strength and speed that each produces. This is also
done because the fighting bulls are becoming stronger and faster. Vistoso (a
new horse in training), is an Azteca sired by Quiver
Training the horses to bullfight
is also a form of art and consists of different aspects to do it
well. To increase the horses confidence level, a "Taurina"
is used to teach the horse to maneuver around a bull and acts as
if it was a real bull charging. A Taurina is
an apparatus on a bicycle wheel that acts like a mechanical bull.
Practicing/training with a taurina gives it a friendlier environment
and a good start for the horses. A great deal of courage is required
to perform at a bullfight and to go up against a fighting bull.
Training starts at 4-years
old and can take anywhere from 2 months to over 2-years and some
will never make it. For example, Quiver,
our breeding stallion took only 4 months to be trained and start
fighting in a bloodless bullfight event. He has the natural ability
as well as the perfect bloodline for this type of discipline.
of our horses gets a daily work-out to increase their strengths
and abilities while waiting for the next bullfight to come. Some
trainings are similar to dressage. During training, the horses
full potential is seen, which in turn will show their individual
traits. The horses are fed alfalfa along with vitamin supplements
to keep them strong and healthy.
Outside of the horses that
are already bullfighting, new horses are in-line getting trained
to grace the arenas in the future. For different reasons, not all
horses in training end up bullfighting. We also breed to reproduce
and continue the best line of bullfighting horses.
Prior to a bullfight, the Cavaleiro
who will be riding the horses will usually arrive a week early,
which gives them the opportunity to both get know one another,
while allowing the bullfighter to see the horses strengths and weaknesses.
During that time, the Cavaleiro will know which horse he/she will
be using at a bullfight event. Out of the six, sometimes they only
Sometimes, the opportunity
arises when Cavaleiros stay longer than a week and they then will
train the horses while they are here. This is a treat for both
us and the horses, because they get training from the best Cavaleiros
in the world.
Telles, Pedro Franco,
Rui Salvador, Alberto Conde, Joaquim Bastinhas, Patricia
Vitor Ribeiro, Rodrigo
Santos, Brito Paes, Vasco
Tabor, Jr., and
Gilberto Felipe are just a few of the bullfighters who have fought
in California with our horses.
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