new icn messageflickr-free-ic3d pan white
Bull Racing in Kerala - Photo 2 | by Anoop Negi
Back to photostream

Bull Racing in Kerala - Photo 2

In this photo the bulls are nearing the finishing post and they must turn left to avoid running into the embankment straight ahead with people standing on top of it. The bulls are not in gallop mode as you can see in Photo 1 of the series and I guess are slowing down.




Adoor in Kerala holds its famous Bull Races every year around the time of Onam. It is a celebration of agrarian existence and is carried on without any grants or aid from the Government. This is a spectacular fiesta of rural Kerala. There are 2-3 other such events that are held in Kerala.


Two racing bulls are hitched together and three men come into action. Two racers with lead ropes on either side of the bulls who try to control the direction and speed if possible and one often obscured by sprays of mud and water, a jockey who rides on a small flat strip of wood.


The bulls race ahead with the men keeping desperately abreast of the thundering hooves. At the end of the racing track there is a 4-6 feet embankment of earth which acts as a protection and a marker for the bulls. The embankment gets totally crowded with onlookers. The bull racers need to turn the bull around and do a 360 degree here but most times that effort fails as the bulls in their racing frenzy would be uncontrollable.


I have no idea on the current status of the bull races. There are enough organisations howling to stop such races but the Supreme Court of India in a judgement a few months ago allowed bull/bullock cart races to go on in Punjab. So chances are that the tradition may still live on.



Taken on August 15, 2007 at 1.16pm IST (edit)

Posted to Flickr September 18, 2012 at 11.18AM IST (edit)

Exif data

Camera Nikon D70

Exposure 0.001 sec (1/1000)

Aperture f/4.0

Focal Length 70 mm

ISO Speed 200

Exposure Bias 0 EV

Flash Off, Did not fire

DSC_0379 via ACR

132 faves
Taken on August 15, 2007