What Will Happen to Michael Martinez's Crowdfunding Campaign?
Michael Martinez, who once represented the Philippines as the country’s lone Winter Olympian, is bowing out of the 2022 Winter Olympics qualifiers because of an injury. But more than the injury, missing the opportunity to represent his country in the Winter Olympics is the most painful part of this incident.
The Philippine Skating Union (PHSU) announced Michael's withdrawal on August 20 and named figure skaters Sofia Frank and Edrian Celestino, and speed skater Julian Macaraeg as Philippine representatives for the Winter Olympic qualifying competition.
“We regretfully announce that one of our elite male skaters, Michael Christian Martinez, has decided to withdraw from his bid for the Nebelhorn Trophy, an Olympic qualifying event for figure skating," said the PHSU in a statement.
It can be remembered back in April 2021, Martinez, through his manager Geoffried Viz, set up a GoFundMe page and asked for financial support for his training expenses. Martinez has been training in the U.S. in preparation for the qualifying events in the Winter Olympics.
Martinez's crowdfunding goal is to reach $50,000 (P2.51 million). As of this writing, Martinez’s campaign has reached $21,681 (P1.09 million).
Esquire reached out to Viz for clarification on the type of injury Martinez sustained, and what will happen to the donated cash for the Olympian's training.
“It's very sad news for Michael and the management has told us not to speak for now,” Viz told Esquire Philippines.
“Regarding the GoFundMe, the website has been sending us the money monthly based on the amount of money received on the respective month, so we have been using it for Michael’s training,” said Viz.
Michael Christian Martinez is the first figure skater from Southeast Asia to qualify and compete in the Winter Olympic Games and Youth Winter Olympic Games.