As many as 100 teams from various parts of the State are taking part in the three-day competitions
A team of six persons can accompany the bulls
Competitions divided into three categories
CHILAKALURIPET (GUNTUR): As one enters the colourfully decorated Lorry Owner’s Association Ground at Siva Priya Nagar on the outskirts of Chilakaluripet on a sunny Wednesday, the settings are perfectly countryside. The leafy poles struck firmly to the ground, the colourful jute baskets struck to the poles and the boisterous crowd cheering the beats in action.
But as one turns his attention to the in marked square, it is where the real action takes place. The sight of rampaging bulls kicking off dust with their powerful hoofs and pulling a solid stone slab weighing about three tonnes is electrifying. The bulls are goaded to cover maximum distance by a team of men holding the reins. As the bulls race on, the crowds get delirious and as the clock ticks by, the excitement is heart-stopping.
Though it appears a crude sport and one which could rankle the spirit of animal lovers, bull races are part of the village folklore. Chilakaluripet M.L.A Marri Rajesekhar is the man behind the show, part of the Somepalli Sambaiah Memorial State wide Annual Bull Race Competitions. As many as 100 teams from various parts of the State are taking part in the competitions which would be held for three days.
After a brief inauguration ceremony, during which the M.L.A recollected the services rendered by Mr. Sambaiah, three-time M.L.A and his father-in-law, the competitions took off.
The rules of the game are simple. Each pair of bulls needs to cover maximum distance as possible within 10 minutes. The square is of 250 metres length and the referee counts the distance based on the number of turns. A team of six persons can accompany the bulls and the bulls should be controlled only with the help of the rope.
The first part of the competitions was for ‘Palapalla’ calves. The bulls owned by Vemula Alekhya from Gurazala Mandal took off and clocked a healthy 2,750 feet within the allotted time of 10 minutes.
The next pair of bulls, owned by Goli Sanjeevaiah, were monstrous in their ability to pull a heavy slab but bulls were uncontrollable.
As a result, they could manage a distance of only 2,500 feet. The third participant, Garla Chiranjeevi Reddy, was not disappointed as his bulls clocked 2,800 metres.
The competitions have been divided into sub-junior, junior and senior categories and the prize money varies from Rs.3,000 to Rs.30,000.