The award of the Premios Ciudadela de Pamplona were handed over to the bullfighters Pablo Hermoso de Mendoza – the horseback bullfighter – and Javier Castaño -matador- by Enrique Maya, Mayor of Pamplona, who took the opportunity to reiterate his belief: “I am fully confident that the Sanfermin Bullfight week in Pamplona is always going to exist. Pamplona and Sanfermin cannot be understood without bulls”, stated Enrique Maya in his speech as he handed over the awards. This statement in support of the Sanfermin bull fights which are organized each year by the Casa de Misericordia old folk’s home, mean an explicit support from the leading municipal authority of Pamplona for bullfighting and the running of the bulls during the annual Sanfermin fiestas. It is a newsworthy item in the sense that it goes against the normal anti-bull statements that we are becoming used to hearing in the media such as the case of the recent suspension of a bullrunning in Toronto or the withdrawal of several publicity campaigns which had the first prize of a trip to the Pamplona Running of the bulls.
The backdrop to the Mayor’s statement was a gathering of bullfighting fans for the awards ceremony and it was learnt here that the Bullfighting program in Quito (Ecuador) to which Pablo Hermoso de Mendoza had been invited to participate, has now been called off. This same bullfighter received his fourth consecutive award of the Ciudadela de Pamplona for his skill on horseback with the second bull of the day on the 6th of July, 2012 at last year’s bullfighting event during Sanfermin. Equally, the matador, Javier Castaño, was given an award for the skill he showed in the bullring with the third Miura bull on the 8th of July, 2012.
The ceremony was hosted by Mariano Pascal, who is the conductor of the bullfighting program “Va por ustedes”, on radio Onda Cero Navarra. The event was held on the eighth floor of the department store El Corte Inglés, in Pamplona, who sponsor this annual award. Pascal opened the event with some words for Carlos Crosta, who was a much-loved and important figure in the bullfighting week in Pamplona and who died earlier this year in 2012.