A 46-year-old San Francisco man was gored in the neck at the bullring at the end of the run, and his condition and prognosis were listed as “grave” by the Royal Navarre Hospital. He was undergoing surgery Sunday, The Associated Press reported.
The Spanish man, 40, and a 23-year-old from Florence, Kentucky, suffered less serious injuries and were both gored in the thigh.
Three others suffered injuries requiring hospitalization as partying daredevils tried to dodge the animals as they thundered through the narrow streets of old Pamplona from a coral to the bullring a half mile away. The run lasted just under three minutes — but can take up to 10 minutes if a bull becomes distracted or lost.
One man was dragged unconscious from the entryway to the bullring after he was trampled by runners and bulls. The Red Cross said it treated 48 people at the scene for minor injuries.
Revelers, usually dressed in white with red kerchiefs, tend to drink prodigious amounts of wine during the festival. The ones who join the bulls chant three times before the running begins, asking Saint Fermin to guide and bless them.
During each of seven days during the festival, six bulls are released to run through the street to the bullring. They are then killed in bullfights. The running of the bulls, a centuries-old tradition, was popularized in Ernest Hemingway’s “The Sun Also Rises.” Last year nine people were injured in the first two days.
The tradition — both the running and the bullfighting — is a target of animal rights advocates. Scores of half-naked demonstrators wearing steer horns took to the streets of Pamplona on Friday and lay down in crime-scene outlines of dead bulls to protest the bullfighting.