October 15, 2004

Bullfight World
By Lyn Sherwood

Fifth Annual Convention of Amateur Toreros Held in Texas

This past weekend, the Fifth Annual Convention of Aficionados Taurinos was held in La Gloria, Texas, at Fred and Lisa Renk’s Rancho La Querencia, attracting amateur toreros and fans from throughout the world.

The Convention, which was dedicated to Lyn Sherwood for his 50 years of involvement in La Fiesta, began with a pachanga, Saturday, in which members of the press and other fans were afforded opportunities to perform with small fighting cows. That evening, following a free feast of barbecued pork, beef, venison, and beer, there was a very funny “roast” of Sherwood, who was awarded a mounted poster of the event and a truly terrible bullfight painting on black velvet. During the roast, he was accused of “coming out of the closet” and was given a princess’ crown.

On Sunday, a formal festival was held, featuring young bulls of don Rafael Mendoza for Jim Verner, Longinos Mendoza, and Frank Gómez. A fourth torero had cancelled, as he had been injured in a festival, held in Monterrey.

Thus, Verner fought two novillos.

The toritos were rather large, up to 350-360 kilos, for a festival without picadores, and they were tough, providing challenges to all of the toreros.

Each was warmly applauded for his efforts with the first three novillos, but Verner came on to save the day with an outstanding performance to the last animal of the afternoon, winning two ears, which were awarded by Plaza Judge Ed Cohn. The afternoon was supported by Matadores David Renk and Enrique Delgado, along with práctico Jim White and others.

In all, a very successful convention.

The last corrida de toros of the Tijuana season was celebrated, last Sunday, and is reviewed by Correspondent Gary Sloan.

Sunday the 10th of October, at the “Beautiful Bull-ring by the Sea”, with six bulls from San Miguel de Mimimuapan” for Rejo-neador Pablo Hermosa de Mendoza and Matadores, Rafael Ortega and Israel Tellez, with about 12,000, to 15,000 spectators to witness the event.

I won’t go into detail about Pablo Hermoso de Mendoza, because he simply is the best, and gives his best, every time. He cut the only ear, with his first animal, but the award was secondary to his art and the amazing synergy or his horses. Bravo! Rafael Ortega was the Raffa of old. That is, he showed up, but didn’t do anything. Enough said. Nothing with either of his bulls.

In his Tijuana debut, the very green Israel Tellez showed some decent stuff, but mostly his inexperience. He was terrible with he capote on his first bull. He was doing fine in the faena, until he went too far, and was caught, and given a terrific cogida, and a goring in his left thigh. He finished the bull with three pinchazos and a three quarter thrust, and retired to the infirmary.

He returned to face his second animal and was, again, terrible with the big cape, and didn’t have much of a faena, either. Really nothing with either of his bulls. Not much of a final corrida, except for Mendoza’s work.

Next week, we’ll review the entire season and name the most impressive toros and toreros.

As of Sept. 26, the top 10 matadores of the Spanish season were as follows:

Name # of Corridas trophies

1 Cesar Jimenez 97 147 ears, 6 tails

2 El Fandi 87 172 ears 6 tails

3 Javier Conde 82 64 ears, 4 tails

4 El Juli 72 75 ears

5 Finito de Cordoba 66 63 ears, 2 tails

6 El Cordobés 58 133 ears, 11 tails

7 Rivera Ordonez 57 71 ears, 1 tail

8 Matias Tejela 57 57 ears, 1 tail

9 Jose Maria Manzanares 57 52 ears

10 Jesulín de Ubrique 56 78 ears, 3 tails

One portion of Shanghai’s 70,000 spectators’ soccer stadium will be temporally adapted as a plaza de toros, with a capacity of 10,000. The organizer of the event is the Spaniard Gabriel de la Casa, a former matador.

Bulls have been shipped from the Mexican ranch of Mariano Gonzalez. Toreros already contracted include Jose Ignacio Ramos, Guillermo Alban and Ivan Garcia. The corrals will be located under the end tiers of the stadium and a 180 feet long sleeve will be positioned as a chiquero’s outlet.

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