Bull Pulling – 1

Excerpt from the book Sports the Olympics Forgot This book describes 40 sports that ought to be played but aren’t, because I made them up.


In 2006 the Basque Government identified 18 particular rural sports, called H18K, in its Strategic Plan for promotion. These 18 categories include sports such as wood chopping, stone lifting, and also what’s called in Basque Giza-abere probak, which translates roughly as dragging games. One of the most difficult dragging games is called Bull Pulling. This sport is often seen in summer at local festivities and open-air dances, held in towns all over the country. The main Bull Pulling event of the year takes place in Guernica in August.

The idea of Bull Pulling is that a contestant will pull a bull a certain distance by grabbing hold of its horns and not letting go until both bull and puller have completely crossed the finishing line. The pulls take place over 250, 500, and 1000 metres. There are three categories of bull that can be pulled: 150kg and under, 151 – 250kg, and 251 – 325kg.

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