Carine Felizardo, from the Brazilian state of Para, has won the Miss Bumbum Brazil 2012 pageant in Sao Paulo.

"I'm very happy with the victory. [I] was confident because I know I'm in my best shape right now," she said, "I expect much change for the better from now on. Already I'm very happy with everything that happened... but I will invest even more in my modelling career."

The 25-year-old, who receives R$5,000 (approximately £1,460) in prize money, has reportedly accepted an invitation to pose nude for the cover of Sexy magazine's January 2013 issue. Asked what makes a woman sexy, the pageant winner replied: "Women have to love yourself."

In the Grand Final, Felizardo vied with 14 other contestants to be judged the owner of the country's best bottom. The contest comprised an elimination round that featured representatives from all of the country's 26 states and the federal district of Brasilia. The contestants' preparation for the competition included surfing lessons and jungle training.

According to the New York Daily News, more than 500 competitors enter the contest every year. However, it is not without controversy. A report on Brazilian news website Globo said one of the contestants, Cibelle Ribeiro, a pre-pageant favourite, was disqualified for suspected implants. However, she was allowed to re-enter the contest after X-rays confirmed her innocence.

Graciela Murano, a Brazilian writer, was quoted in the Huffington Post as admitting her country had a "thing with butts" and also that the word "bumbum" was a commonly used term in the South Amercian country. Murano also said that while most people knew of the competition, they pretend they're not interested.

"Every woman has read about it and won't admit it," she said, "and every man's dream is to be a part of the judging team."

Here is a selection of photographs from the Miss Bumbum Brazil 2012 pageant in Sao Paulo...

Carine Felizardo reacts after winning the Miss Bumbum Brazil 2012 pageant in Sao PauloReuters
Contestants parade at the Miss Bumbum pageant in Sao PauloReuters
A spectator takes a photograph of a contestant at the Miss Bumbum Brazil 2012 pageant in Sao PauloReuters
A contestant parades at the Miss Bumbum Brazil 2012 pageant in Sao PauloReuters
A contestant poses for photos at the Miss Bumbum Brazil 2012 pageant in Sao PauloReuters