If you ever have a chance to go to a horse fight, GO!
This is just a whole lot more exciting than cockfights. No horses die. But it is very Earthy adventure/excitement.
In far flung barranguys, where they have no utilities or roads all the transportation is done by pack horses. When the road stops, and the trails begin, usually there is a market. This is where the most horse fight are held, impromptu. You can be just sitting having a beer, BBQ, maybe fried bananas… and look up and see two stallions going at it, right in the market basket ball court. Sometimes the horsed use the market itself as a place to fight, with corresponding damage to stalls… Did not see anybody complain!
Once or twice a year they meet for a horse fight on the lowlands. Pictured here are shots from a horse fight east of Dipolog, Mindanao. Some have an entrance fee but most are free as this one was. This was held as part of a fiesta celebration.
The process is simple enough. Each stallion is allowed to be introduced to a mare who remains tied up top a guy line. Then the stallions are turned lose to fight, make love, get kicked really hard where you just know it will hurt bad, try to kick or bite the other one as many times as possible.
This meeting might look friendly to the stallion but the mare plans to kick the wholly heck out of him if she can.
Note here, NO FENCES. get just as close as you like. generally speaking young men want to be close and women and couples are in the truck or bleachers.
Note here that one horse is about to push the other over backwards and the spectators are running for their lives.
After about 5 minutes the fight is over.
At about this time I noticed that my wallet had been pick-pocketed. I had a junk wallet, no ID, and just a few pesos in it as I had been warned about any crowd scene’s dangers. One that I did not foresee was that I had bet P300 on the grey and it was becoming obvious he would yield the field soon, I had no money. I made a hasty retreat to my car, drove away.
A fun afternoon in Mindanao.