Filipino Winter Olympian, Michael Martinez, has organized a GoFundMe fundraiser to support his expenses towards his goal of competing for the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.

According to Martinez’s Instagram post, he is undergoing intensive training in New Jersey, USA, which costs him around $16,000 every month.

The fundraiser has so far amassed a total of $17,191 out of its $50,000 goal as of writing.

“My team and I have organized a fundraising campaign called MICHAEL MARTINEZ – Road to 2022 Winter Olympics to help out with some [of] the training expenses for the reason that I currently don’t have sponsors yet,” he wrote on his Instagram post.

His GoFundMe page expressed how Martinez wanted to be the first athlete from a tropical nation to bring home a Winter Olympic medal, but also said that this is not the only reason why he joined the Olympics.

“Nonetheless, his participation in this event is more than just becoming a champion, as it is also about generating more awareness about the sport and his motherland,” his team wrote.

The 24-year-old, the first Southeast Asian and Filipino figure skater who qualified and competed in the Winter Olympic Games and Youth Winter Olympic Games, is coached by Nikolai Morozov, along with Evgeni Plushenko who were known to be part of the top international figure skating coaches, having bagged four Olympic medals and three world titles.

Martinez was the 2015 Asian Figure Skating Trophy champion and the two-time Triglav Trophy champion. He also won one ISU Challenger Series medal and was a silver medalist at the 2014 Warsaw Cup.

The 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics is scheduled to be held from February 4 to 20, 2022 in Beijing, China. Ariane Mae Bautista