October 14, 2005

Bullfight World
By Lyn Sherwood

Another Triump For Zotoluco

Major Scandal Over Last Juárez Appearance of Cavazos

Mexican Matador Eulalio López “El Zotoluco” registered still another great Tijuana triumph, last Sunday (Oct. 2), in Plaza Monumental de Tijuana, the “Beautiful Bullring by The Sea”. Zotoluco, Rafael Ortega, and newcomer Guillermo Martinez faced a herd of bulls from Begoña for a crowd of some 5,000-6,000 fans.

According to Tijuana correspondent Gary Sloan, with his first bull, “Ya Estas” (520 kilos), El Zotoluco did some light capote work. His faena was grand, in every aspect, both on the right and left. A great sword topped it off, and two ears were cut for the matador.

With his second toro, “Proyecto” (525 kilos), Zotoluco again offered light work with the capote to a very wise and difficult bull that provided lots of problems, which Lalo overcame and, once again, triumphed in the faena. He demonstrated strong stuff with both hands, and lots of dominio. After another great sword, he, again, was awarded dos orejas.

Rafael Ortega

Rafa did his usual shtick to both of his bulls and got nothing.

Guillermo Martinez

Martinez was a delightful surprise. The youngster was great with both of his bulls, but a terrible performance with the sword cost him any awards. A shame, really, because he is a fine lidiador.

The next corrida is the 16th, with “El Conde”, Caesar Castañeda, and Fabián Barba. The bull ranch was not announced.

Brouhaha in The Afternoon

A major subterfuge involved in the draw of bulls for Eloy Cavazos, has developed in Juárez.Empresario Pepe López Hurtado had purchased a herd of bulls from the ranch of Pérez Salazar. But, one of them, apparently, became the target of a “bait-and-switch” scheme.

Hurtado, in an interview with the Esto newspaper, charged that, in cahoots with the bull breeder and, apparently, with Rafael Baez. the manager of Cavazos, the best bull of the herd was illegally replaced, in order that it could later be fought in a novillada, in La Plaza Mexico.

Said Hurtado, “They did it with a classic street scheme, in which two con men are used to fool or trick the mark, which was me! On the day that the bulls arrived, the ganadero did not like the reserve bulls that I had at the Juárez plaza, and he said that he had sent along a reserve bull of his own, which I had not purchased.

“The ganadero said that, because one of the bulls that I had bought —a beautiful, magnificent beast— had appeared to be sick, before the trip, (to Juárez) and developed a tendency to want to lie down, so if that bull needed to be replaced, on the day of the fight, I could use the reserve bull that he had sent.

“The day of the bullfight, I was not there to oversee things, and with me out of the way, the ganadero and (Baez and/or Cavazos) went to the (plaza) judge and convinced him to remove this magnificent bull from the rotation and replace it with the reserve bull that the ganadero had sent.

“The ganadero then immediately loaded that bull on a truck and whisked it out of my arena and to Mexico City, where the ganadero sold the bull to La Plaza Mexico for more money than I had (originally) paid for it. And, that animal fought magnificently in a Mexico City novillada.

“Everybody got cheated! I got cheated by Eloy and the ganadero. The fans in Mexico City got cheated, because the animal lost weight during the trip to Juárez, then lost more weight on the trip back to Mexico City. I was robbed! The Mexico City fans were robbed. Eloy and the gan-adero made out, like bandits!

“The problem is not the money! The problem is that I was cheated in a classic bait and switch scheme, by two robbers: Eloy and the ganadero, working both sides of the mark: me!”

Commented aficionado/bullfight photographer Cons-tantine Mengason, “Pepe was cheated; no question. Eloy is, apparently, connected with the novillero who drew the animal at the sorteo (rigged?) in Mexico City, and that animal surrendered its ears.

“The incident (verifies) without a doubt that the bulls we see along the border are really novillos, not toros! If not, would someone please explain to me how an animal can be a toro in Juárez or Tijuana, and that same animal can be a novillo in Mexico City?

“This is also verifying proof that Eloy not only rigs bulls for himself, but does so for novilleros who he either manages, or has something to do with it,” commented Mengason.

Mengason also held Pepe López Hurtado’s feet to the fire for presenting novillos for a corrida de toros in Juárez. However, he failed to mention that Hurtado leases both of his bullrings to the Mexico City syndicate, which purchases the bulls and hires the matadors. Thus, the syndicate, rather than Hurtado, should be blamed for such incidents.

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