Rompelunas opens Fallas.

Saturday 10 March at 17.00. Novillada without picadores. Heavy rain with thunder and lightining during the first three bulls. Large puddles on the floor made it difficult and dangerous for the toreros to perform. Glorious golden sunlight with a double rainbow in the second half. Two-year-olds from Nazario Ibañez, four reds and two blacks. Well presented but unequal in weight and horns. (As is ususal with novilladas sin picadores, no weight was posted). Last four well proportioned, well horned. Best bull of the evening number six, Empacho.

The beginning of the Fallas cycle for the students of the bullfighting schools José Antonio Valencia, a Venezuelan from the escuela de Arles (F), the Mexican Arturo Gilio and Borja Collado an alumno of the escuela de Valencia.

1. Rompelunas, colorado. Slightly distracted but concentrated during the faena de muleta. For José Antonio Valencia

The young Venezuelan, attached to the Arles school of Tauromaquia is a novillero-banderillero but no doubt the condition of the sand hindered his performance. Still very much a student of bullfighting, his handling of the muleta is very limited.

The estocada got four handkerchiefs waving after which he came out and saluted the crowd.

2. Barbapavido, colorado, also distracted at first but fine during the faena.

For Arturo Grilio

Still heavy rain which didn’t stop all three going down on their knees during their quites: the usual largas cambiadas, chicuelinas and gaoneras.

The young Mexican, not attached to a bullfighting school, didn’t have a hard time getting the novillo to follow his muelta. A half sword got the bull down and some applause from the crowd that by now had sought refuge in the palcos.

3. Salero. Black, first of three well proportioned novillos.

For Borja Collado (not related to Roman Collado ‘Roman’)

A typical product of the Valencian School, very much influenced by maestro Ponce but with enough personal touches to watch him with interest. After a dedication to the public a good solid faena, almost ordering the bull to follow his muleta. As seems to be the case with students of the valencian escola, he mised at the first attempt with the sword and got knocked about. The second attempt went in ‘trasera’ and ‘tendida’ but it still got him the ear of the noble novillo.

4. Grandecito, a big red novillo.

For José Antonio Valencia who decided to place his banderillas while seated on a folding chair but thought against it when the bull charged. Once more the faena missed temple and personality with a visible abuse of the pico during his naturales.

5. Garganteoso, black. Arturo Grilio’s second. A good, noble animal that lost interest during a faena that never was. Pinchazo, four descabellos, an aviso and a silent crowd. Meanwhile the rain stopped and the sun bathed the arena in a golden light and a double rainbow.

6. Empacho, colorado, bragado, girón. Noble, bravo. By far the best novillo of the evening. A delightful faena with a novillero who recognized the quality of his opponent. Borja Collado’s faena had excellent series of right handers and sweeping naturales with the left hand holding a very low muleta. A pinchazo and an estocada baja still got him the second ear and opened the Puerta Grande.

Cronica de Pieter Hildering

Fotografias de . Mateo Tauroimagenplus