How To Train Riot Horses

26 Jan

Cue the Magnificent Seven theme song. Yul Brynner, Steve McQueen, Charles Bronson, Robert Vaughn, James Coburn, Eli Wallach, Brad Dexter – a menacing force riding into town to protect the locals and eliminate a marauding group of vandals. A typical American western flick, and arguably the greatest of all time. Fast forward fifty years and the image of the law atop the four-legged animal is as prominent as it was then.

This time, the intentions are not heroism but duty. Not an assertion of force, but a prevention of chaos. Not cowboys and indians, but riot police and hooligans.

In preparation of tonight’s Copa Del Rey semifinal first leg in Andalusia featuring Seville and Real Madrid, the mounted police have been practicing extensively for any potential crowd trouble. No less than 160 cavalry will be deployed in the surrounding streets outside the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium no ensure that nothing gets out of hand. The above video, shows the preparation for the horses in an obstacle course that mimics real life situations – vuvuzelas, live ammunition, drums, flags, tear gas, and men banging the lids of garbage cans. There’s even a western soundtrack towards the end.

These horses look like something out of Lord of the Rings adorned in armor, padding, and shields!! Word to the wise – don’t pick a fight with these guys.

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