Rita Marques is European kata champion

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Rita Marques became European Karate Kata champion in women's cadets. In the final, the Portuguese athlete beat Austrian Tamara Lehner by just 0.70 points (41.9 for Marques against 41.2 for Lehner). The achievement takes on even more weight as it is the first time a Portuguese athlete has won a gold medal at the European Championships in this sport.

At the Cadet, Junior and Under-21 European Championship, which took place recently in Tbilisi (Georgia), Rita Marques confirmed her current good shape, having also reached first place in the world ranking. Representing the national team, the athlete from the Goju-Ryu Karate Centre in Porto achieved an unprecedented individual feat, as together with Bárbara Ribeiro and Lara Teixeira, she had won the team title in 2023, in Cyprus.

In October last year, the young Porto resident became the first national karate athlete to reach the top of the world kata ranking in her class, after winning another gold at the Karate 1 Youth League, held in Mexico.

Rita Marques was one of the names supported in the 2023 edition of the Porto City Council's Sponsorship of High-Performance Athletes with High Sporting Potential programme.

During the European Championship in Tbilisi, another of the athletes supported by this municipal programme, João Vieira, also made the podium by winning the bronze medal in the junior class.

Portugal won five medals in this competition at Georgia's capital.