PLEASANTON (CBS) — Hundreds ran with the bulls Saturday.
It was not in Pamplona… it was the Alameda County Fairgrounds, in Pleasanton.
First, there’s the anticipation.
“Extremely terrified, nervous, scared,” was how Rosa Rivera described her feelings before the run.
Then, comes the countdown.
Three, two, one — and finally, the running.
Try to imagine forty 1500 pound bulls barreling at you at 30 miles per hour.
Steven Robinson sported his Go Pro to capture the exhilaration.
“The smart runners stay to the side,” said Robinson. “It was intense, quite an experience, that’s for sure.
Others just jumped out of harm’s way.
Meantime, outside the fairgrounds, animal rights activists gathered to protest the run.
Jacinda Pierson believes it is stressful on the bulls.
“They have no choice.” Said Pierson. “This is exploiting them, it’s not fair to them.”
Speaking of stress, one participant did get gored.
It seems that if you try to actually outrun a bull, it’s a bad idea.
After the rest of the bulls passed and the dust settled, rescue crews walked him out and put him on a stretcher. Witnesses say he was running in the bulls’ way.
“It just shows you how dangerous it can be,” said Jason Perkins of Vacaville. He knows the victim.
Jason said his friend Justin will be okay. He went to the hospital to be sure.
But Jason’s 13-year-old daughter, Madeline had a tough time watching. She couldn’t fight the tears.
“I just didn’t want him to get hurt,” she said . “He’s a really good family friend.”
“She’s a little upset,” said Jason. “But she understands the danger that comes along with it.”
“It’s the danger that draws people to the event,” said organizer Rob Dickens. “They want to test themselves to see how they react.”
Dickens said no one has ever died in the thrill run’s nine events. The worst injury was a broken pelvis.
“If you see someone whipping the bulls, let me know,” said Dickens. “We don’t abuse the bulls in any way.”
He added, if you listen to the instructions and get out of the way… you can get the excitement without injury.
According to Dickens, the bulls are predictable. They run right down the middle. It’s the people who are the problem, when they get in the bulls’ way.