May 9, 2003

Bullfight World
By Lynn Sherwood

Cavazos and Spinola in Tijuana Opener

The 2003 Tijuana bullfight season was inaugurated, last Sunday, in Plaza El Toreo de Tijuana, resulting in triumphs for Eloy Cavazos and Fermín Spinola.

According to correspondent Gary Sloan, some 10,000 fans were on hand for the affair, which was presented on a beautiful, albeit somewhat windy, afternoon.

A herd of bulls from Bernaldo de Quiroz, weighing from 445 to 540 kilos, was presented to Cavazos, Spinola, and Jorge Gutierrez, each of whom enjoyed fine work with difficult toros. But, for whatever reason, the bulls did not allow much success with the capote.


With his first animal, “Peregrino,” at 448 kilos, The Little Giant was tepid with the capote. As the animal developed great sentido (uncanny knowledge) in the third act, and Eloy did very little with it. Many applauded; many others didn’t.

The 500-kilo “Andasolo” didn’t allow Eloy much success with the cape. His bull was badly over-pic’ed, bringing a fine from the judge’s box. Eloy’s faena was a typical performance, very good on both sides, with plenty of showmanship to punctuate his work. After a fine sword placement, Cavazos was awarded two ears.


The always anxious-to-please Mexican received “Altivo” (515 kilos) with cautious cape work. The bull was strong against the horses, knocking one of them to the sand. Jorge’s faena was very good, with some very slow naturals and derechazos. After killing with a good sword, Gutierrez was awarded an ear.

His second bull was rather weak, allowing only scattered moments to the matador.


Although obviously green, Fermin Spinola left a very good impression and the promise of a good future in the arenas. He did very little with his first bull. But, his second, the last of the day, was an excellent animal that allowed a huge triumph for the young matador. Although he didn’t show much with the capote, he shone with the banderillas, muleta, and sword. He won two ears, while the bull, “Cominito” was granted two turns of the arena.

All in all, not a bad way to start the season.


In Madrid, young rejoneador Curro Bedoya, 19, remains in critical condition, in a coma, after falling from the horse, which then fell on top of the torero. He is expected to endure brain surgery. His vital signs are positive.


The annual Feria de San Marcos, in Aguascalientes, was marred by several incidents—including an undeserved indulto, granted to a bull drawn by El Zotocluco, and weak, difficult bulls—but in the end, the most triumphant matador was David Fandila “El Fandi”, who won a pair of ears, May 5.

Rafael Ortega won ears and tail, May 6, following his triumph with a bull of Begoña.


In Doxey, Hidalgo, May 5, bulls of La Guadalupana allowed triumphs to rejoneador Enrique Fraga (two ears), Mariano Ramos (two ears), and Marcial Herce, who was applauded.


In Maracay, Venezuela, popular matador Leonardo Benitez was gored while killing. The horn, in the stomach, left three trajectories. Two ears were delivered to him in the infirmary, and he was proclaimed the triunfador of the annual corrida for the press.


With the exception of one afternoon of Miura bulls, the spring feria in La Real Maestranza of Sevilla, was rather a dull affair. The triunfador was Jesús Millán, who cut two ears. Other awards included Matias Tejela, who performed the best faena; Rivera Ordoñez for the best sword, and Leonardo Hernández as the best rejoneador. Miura was honored for presenting the best bull of the feria, while the 590-kilo “Bolo” was proclaimed the best individual bull.

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