It invaded their personal bubble.
Harrowing footage captured the moment an enraged bull gored several people during a “bubble race” in Utah — tossing them into the air like beach balls.
“All of our jaws dropped at this point,” a spectator named Emma told Pen News of the catastrophe, which occurred Saturday at Dinosaur Roundup Rodeo in Vernal.
Local contestants were participating in a “bubble ball bull racing,” a “Jackass”-esque pursuit in which “ten brave individuals” wearing large inflatable hamster balls race each other around the arena while avoiding a loose bull, per the rodeo’s website. The traumatizing clip — think bubble soccer meets Pamplona’s infamous Running Of The Bulls festival — is currently blowing up online.
“The first contestant to race around the barrel in front of the roping chutes, and return to the starting line will win $500!” they wrote.
“When we initially saw them come out we were all laughing saying we wished we’d signed up, since it just looked like they’d be racing in bubble balls,” Emma described.
That was until they released the bull, and the “harmless-seeming” pastime quickly turned into volleyball with the people acting as the balls.
The accompanying footage shows bubble-wrapped contestants fleeing for their lives as the steer chases several racers down and bucks them into the air like beachballs.
At one point, it can be seen ragdolling a hapless woman with its head until her ball pops on its horns, before trampling her with its hooves. The clip concludes with a rodeo hand helping the victim to her feet and ushering her out of the arena.
Emma painted the Coliseum-esque scene. “Regular people – untrained, probably just randomly picked out from the crowd – were literally getting ripped up and thrown in the air,” she described, adding that the contestants sported “no padding, no helmet, nothing.” Meanwhile the bubbles — provided they didn’t pop during the melee — only covered the contestants’ upper torsos, leaving their legs completely exposed.
Describing the final victim, Emma described, “With the last lady in the video, I was filming but my friend was yelling at me to stop recording because we seriously thought the bull was going to rip open her stomach.”
Indeed the woman appeared to sport an “apple-sized” puncture wound on her abdomen following the attack, according to Emma.
Another spectator, who has opted to go unnamed, analogized the woman’s thrashing to that of a crash test dummy upon impact.
“Her legs flopped around and it looked really bad, and she got trampled,” the aghast rode-goer described to Pen News. “I was scared because It looked pretty bad.”
The Dinosaur Roundup Rodeo has yet to comment on the catastrophe while a nearby hospital, Ashley Regional Medical Center, told Pen News it could not provide any details on the status of the contestants, who may or may not have been treated there.
In light of the volley-bull fiasco, Emma says she can never look at rodeos the same way again.
“I just think this is incredibly stupid,” she said. “It’s a danger to the people involved as well as the bull.”
In a freak accident last week, a 20-year-old Georgia college student was killed after getting struck by a gate that a horse ran into at an event in Chatsworth.