Ultra-Marathoner Runs His Message Around Famous Bullfighting Town
At the annual summer festival held in Bayonne, France, 48 bulls are massacred in bullfights. When this year’s festival was cancelled, vegan ultra-endurance runner Régis Dinand-Mangeot decided to make the most of the empty streets and pay tribute to the victims of bullfighting – by running 48 kilometres along a route starting and ending in front of the city’s bullring that formed the shape of a bull’s head.
At bullfights in France, sensitive animals are tortured and violently killed to entertain dwindling audiences. During the cruel spectacle, men on horseback and on foot torment the terrified bull and drive lances and banderillas into his back and neck. When the animal is fatigued by the blood loss and the relentless harassment, the matador makes his appearance. After provoking a few charges from the exhausted bull, he attempts to kill him by stabbing him with his sword. If the bull doesn’t die straight away, the matador will use a dagger or another weapon to sever his spinal cord and finally kill him.
“Bullfighting is anything but a sport. It’s a macabre ‘spectacle’ featuring the torture and killing of a terrified being,” said Régis, who explained that through his run, he aimed to raise awareness of the plight of bulls and to call for bullfights to be banned in Bayonne altogether.
Régis’ run in Bayonne was not his first athletic challenge for animals. In 2017, he undertook a 24-hour run in Albi, France, to promote vegan living and highlight the work of PETA France. And a month earlier, he ran the 750 kilometres from Paris to Toulouse to promote animal rights.
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