Shoulder high


Javier MartĂ­nez de La Puente

Photo: Javier MartĂ­nez de La Puente
10th July 2014

There is no greater honor for a bullfighter than to be carried out shoulder high from the bullring after giving a noteworthy performance in the arena. Even for the imitation matadors. This supposed matador managed to get carried out shoulder high along with the exit of the Peña clubs, taking one of his “ears” awarded to him in the bullring.

A Sanfermin Running of the Bulls in New York to promote a “100 montaditos” Tapas Bar


100 montaditos Running of the Bulls New York

This coming Thursday, 18th of September, a Sanfermin-style running of the Bulls will be held in New York to promote the two Tapas bars of 100 Montaditos which are located in the big apple. With an inscription fee of just 15 euros, all of which will be donated to the Nueva York Food Bank, all those who wish to participate can sign up for this running event (without real bulls of course) which will cover the 1 mile distance between the two premises of the 100 Montaditos Tapas chain. Start-off with be at 18.30 (NYC) from outside the premises at 176 Bleecker Street and it will finish, some twenty minutes later, at the premises in 177 Ludlow Street. Here is the route on Google Maps.

All those who sign up will receive a free T-shirt and a two-hour free open bar ticket for the two 100 Montaditos tapas bars. The promoters of the event point out that “San Fermín is a Spanish tradition which has been going on since the XIV century in Pamplona, Spain when a dozen fighting bulls were let loose in the streets of the city. Nowadays, thousands of runners take part in this event by running in front of the fighting bulls.”

Once again it is clear from a promotion of this kind that the Sanfermin Running of the Bulls tends to be a world-wide tourism reference when Spanish products come to be promoted or when any kind of reference is made to a physical or sportslike event. 100 montaditos promote their services by pointing out the advantages of a cold Spanish beer or having the tasty Tapas snacks of cured ham as well as other kinds of tapas which go down so well with the drinks. At the same time, they exploit the Sanfermin event, knowing that it is one of the best-known events from Spain which are recognized and known by New Yorkers.  Signing up for the run can be made at the 00 Montaditos NY web site or directly at the premises of either of the two Tapas bars and also just before the event starts off on the day.


Fiesta on the streets

Javier MartĂ­nez de La Puente

Photo: Javier MartĂ­nez de La Puente
10th July 2014

In Sanfermin the fiesta goes on 24 hours a day and on the streets there are shows and performances for all tastes. However, one of the wildest scenes is the exit of the Peña clubs from the bullring each evening after the bullfights are over. The ambience is wild and joyful as the brass bands liven up the street scene with their Sanfermin music.

The energy of a charging bull is more than 4 tons



Today it is the turn for some mathematical facts which will help us learn some figures that will justify our fear of the fighting bull and which will reveal the dangers of a fighting bull on the streets of Pamplona in Sanfermin. To begin, let us take a bull with a weight of 550 kilos and which moves at a rate of 10 kilometers per hour.

How much energy is contained in a bull of 550 kilos and which moves at 10 km/per hour?
That is the energy that hits against the hoarding or fencing along the stretch of the course, or, in a worse scenario, hits against a runner. Energy of a body in motion is called kinetic energy and comes from the formulae:


We multiply the mass per squared velocity (expressed in squared meters per second) and we divide in 2. The result, substituting the terms, is 2121.91 Joules, which is the International System Unit for Energy. As an estimate, standard safety footwear only has a resistance of 200 joules. If a bull were to dissipate all its energy on the point of some safety footwear, it would blow it to smithereens.

Now this energy, (which is neither created nor destroyed but rather transformed) we will now invert by piercing a wooden post with the horn of a bull and bring the bull to a total stop in the not inconsiderable quantity of five centimeters. That is to say, the horn makes a five centimeter orifice in the wood and the bull remains totally static.

The effort (energy) to do that gives rise to the formula:

Effort = Force * Movement

Substituting, 2121.91=F*0.05 (meters). Then F=42438.27 Newtons -International System Unit for Force-, which would be the equivalent to some 4326, 02 kilos, or just over four tons.

These 42438 N are applied around a horn with a radius of 0.5 cm. Thus, arises the concept of pressure which is force shared out over a surface. The surface of a circle is pi*R^2, where pi=3.1415927. The surface (now converted into squared meters) =7.85E-5 m2.

Thus, Pressure P=42438.27/7.85E-5=5.41E+8 Pascals=5517 kg/cm2, a pressure very similar to that found in artillery cannon. (A footnote for all you engineers, physicists and mathematicians: A spherical bull of R Radius has been assumed for this situation -spherical cow theory-.)

In conclusion, a goring with a bull’s horn has sufficient energy to destroy a runner. That point should be borne in mind by runners before they decide to enter the course. (This article was written with the help of Alfonso Aparicio, engineer.)

It’s time for a selfie


Picture taken by Javier Martinez de La Puente

During these Sanfermines, one of the most frequent sights to be seen was the “Selfie trend”. We saw selfies of the party scene, of the drinking sessions, of the bulls, etc. In short, just about every Sanfermin event was snapped from a selfie angle. A perfect example is this photo taken just minutes before the Running of the Bulls, where a gang of lads couldn’t resist a selfie of themselves. Brave lads!

Fear around the streets



Picture taken by Javier Martinez de La Puente

The terror of all the kids in Pamplona, and indeed, the rest of us as well; Caravinagre. There are various big-heads among the entourage of The Giants but the worst one is, without any doubt, this one. In this photo, we can see how he is already lurking in wait for the camera, which, after taking his photo, will then get what it deserves for daring to photo his fearful face.

The invasion of the Minions


Javier MartĂ­nez de La Puente

Photo: Javier MartĂ­nez de La Puente
9th July 2014

Sanfermin fiestas attract thousands and thousands of people who are looking for enjoyment and fun. But it also brings in people who are looking for a chance to make some money doing whatever is needed to be done. And this year there was a veritable invasion of underlings all over Pamplona. There were also lots of the usual street shows and performances, as is normal in Sanfermin.