Madeira nurtures its home grown talent and has produced some formidable sports personalities, such as football legend Cristiano Ronaldo who played for youth teams C.F Andorinha and C.D. Nacional before moving to mainland team, Sporting Lisbon.
But it is not just in the field of football that Madeira excels, table tennis player Marcos Freitas, currently ranked Number 12 in the world has an impressive score card having been part of the Gold medal team at the 2015 European Games in Baku, Gold medallist in the men’s double at the Gdansk – Sopot European Championships in 2011 and winning an individual silver medal at the 2015 European Championships in Ekaterinburg.
Windsurfer João Rodrigues has three European titles to his name and in 2011; to celebrate his fortieth birthday and raise awareness of the Natural Park of Madeira successfully windsurfed nonstop from Selvagem Grande (one of the Selvagens Islands) to Madeira, a distance of 160 nautical miles.
It’s downhill and its fast, but 9 times National Champion mountain biker, Emanuel Pombo wouldn’t have it any other way. Nicknamed ‘Battle’ has racked up a number of wins and credits to his name, including winning the National Enduro Cup in 2017.
Ultra Trail Runner/Ultra Sky Runner and Km Vertical Runner Luis Fernandes is a high achiever with his greatest win coming in 2015 when he won the prestigious Madeira Island Ultra Trail. He was the first Madeiran to win what is considered to be the biggest trail running race in Portugal.