SAO PAULO – Food engineer Gabriela Markus, who represented the state of Rio Grande do Sul, was crowned Miss Brazil 2012-2013 over the weekend and will represent her country at the Miss Universe 2012 beauty pageant this December in Las Vegas.
The 23-year-old Markus, who stands 1.8 meters (5 feet 11 inches) tall, succeeds the 2011 winner Priscila Machado who also represented Rio Grande do Sul, the state that with 12 of its contestants crowned over the years has had the most winners in the 58-year history of the Miss Brazil beauty contest.
The other Miss Brazil finalists at the Ceara Events Center in the northern city of Fortaleza were first runner-up Thiessa Sickert, 19, representing Minas Gerais, and in third place Kelly Fonseca, 23, from Rio Grande do Norte.
“When I got here and saw all these really beautiful girls, I thought I’d never win the title, but at every stage my hopes grew and I managed to win,” Markus said.
Markus has the kind of looks the South American country has chosen to represent it since 2006 – since then all its Miss Universe candidates have had white skin and black hair, triumphing over hopefuls who were either blond, dark skinned, mulatto, black, with Indian features, or with Arab or Asian roots. EFE