The terrified half-tonne animal became confused and ran head-first into a wooden post – dying instantly in the collision.
The animal died at the burning bull festival in the small town of Foios, 10 miles north of Valencia in eastern Spain.
Initially it was tied to the wooden post in the centre of a makeshift bullring, in front of a crowd of several hundred onlookers.
It’s horns were set alight before the animal was released.
Disorientated and confused, it ran a short distance before turning round and crashing straight into the wooden post at full speed.
Local reports said the animal, from the Salvador Domecq ranch, died immediately.
Earlier in the day the same animal had gorged a man in the leg during the ‘bous al carrer’ festival, which is Valencian for ‘bulls in the street’, during which the animals chase locals through narrow lanes and into the town square.
The local man, aged 20, was treated by paramedics at the scene.
A video of the bull dying was posted online by animal rights campaigners.
One reader commented on a local newspaper website: ‘Torturing animals is not fun, it’s barbaric.’
Supporters of the festivals claim the bulls do not suffer and say the tradition dates back more than 400 years.
Spanish animal rights groups say there are hundreds of similar fiestas involving burning bulls around the country.