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After years of dreaming about it, Oneika Raymond finally joined a growing band of women lured by the Spanish thrill of being chased by giant, fighting bulls through Pamplona.
"I survived, I am so happy," the 29-year-old Canadian said just moments after she completed the third bull run of the annual San Fermin festival on Monday.
"It was exhilarating, exciting and frightening," added Raymond, who works as a teacher in London, as she stood outside the northern city's bull ring alongside the three other women with whom she ran.
A generation ago it was extremely rare for a woman to take part in the daily bull runs of the alcohol-fueled San Fermin festival, which dates back to medieval times.
But more and more women, mostly from outside of Spain, are seeking the thrill of dashing ahead of the half-ton beasts as they thunder along a 850-meter course from a holding pen to Pamplona's bull ring.
Of the 20,500 people who took part in the festival's eight bull runs last year, 6 percent were women, according to a study prepared for Pamplona city hall.
"There has never been a law against women running with the bulls. It is a question of tradition. In Pamplona a man ran to show his love for a women, it was one of the main reasons," said Paula Diaz of Pamplona's bull run museum.
"But little by little, as the years have passed, women have dared to race in front of the bulls with courage. It is still not well regarded because breaking with tradition is complicated but a woman has the same right as a man to run."
Raymond said she did not feel male runners were bothered by her presence the run - and they did not show women any special treatment.
"I think it was every man for himself regardless of whether you are a man or a woman. I think everyone was just trying to survive and get out of the bulls' way," said Raymond, who was struck in the face during a pile-up of runners.