Portugal’s favourite daredevil boosts free fall event

news: Portugal’s favourite daredevil boosts free fall event

PORTUGAL’s favourite daredevil and champion free fall parachutist, Mário Pardo, thrilled spectators as he and other parachutists dropped in on people enjoying a Sunday stroll on the sands of Praia da Rocha.

Pardo, the country’s number one free fall parachutist and veteran of over 2,500 jumps, is in Portimão for the 4th Portuguese Parachuting Trophy, the first round of which is currently taking place at the Municipal Aerodrome near Penina.

Also a leading base-jumper, Pardo hit the headlines earlier this year when he leapt from the roof of a lorry off Lisbon’s 25 de Abril Bridge, a drop of some 70 metres to the Tejo river below, where he was picked up by a motor launch. Pardo has previously jumped from the top of Lisbon’s Alfa Hotel (75m), Madeira’s cliffs (230m), from the top of the Rádio Renascença aerial mast, the highest in Europe (265m), and from the top of the Jardins da Rocha building in Praia da Rocha, Portimão.

In addition to performing numerous death-defying feats all over the world, Pardo has won the Portuguese Parachuting Trophy on all three previous occasions.

Despite his many achievements, Pardo remains modest and down-to-earth. He lists among his interests yoga, meditation, Buddhism and “growing through interpersonal relationships”. Apart from being a free fall and base-jumping instructor, Pardo is also a professional psychotherapist, specialising in drug and alcohol addiction.

Overall, the 4th Portuguese Parachuting Trophy competition features the participation of seven teams, including Évora Aeroclube, the Blue Emotions from Lisbon and the Parachutist Association of the South. Winners of the four-man free fall event were the MiB (Made in Black) Team from Lisbon. The teams Proença a Voar and Paraquedismo do Sul came second and third respectively.

• Coming up on March 19 and 20 are the Skysurf and Freefly events.