Hong Kong's first Winter Olympian, Cordia Tsoi Po-yee, will finally be able to afford a new competition outfit to replace her old one ahead of February's Salt Lake City Games. Local sports chiefs yesterday pledged their support for Tsoi, who qualified in the United States on Sunday. The 17-year-old said after her historical efforts at the Salt Lake City venue that she was concerned at the lack of proper training venues - the rinks in the SAR are only one-third the Olympic size as winter sports have received little support in Hong Kong. Tsoi also complained that it was embarrassing wearing the same old, and holed, outfit. But her plea for funding was duly answered as the Sports Development Board (SDB) promised their support. 'She will be given up to $100,000 as a preparation fee and we'll also be responsible for all the expenses in sending Tsoi and her coach to the 2002 Winter Games,' said SDB sports development manager Margaret Siu yesterday. 'Items such as air tickets, accommodation and new gear will be included. The Hong Kong Skating Union has to send us a detailed programme plan about her preparation, so we can process the request immediately,' Siu said. HKSU president Eva Fung said she was relieved the SDB could come up with the money, saying she had considered letting Tsoi head for training in Chengchun by plane from Shenzhen because 'the air ticket is cheaper there'. Fung said: 'I'll talk to coach [Lu Shuo] and Cordia when they come back this week and see what kind of training suits her best. I'm proud of what Cordia achieved. In the past, people only knew there was figure skating in Hong Kong, but they now realise that we have good short-track speed skaters, too.' Olympic supremo Timothy Fok Tsun-ting also joined the acclaim for Tsoi and vowed he would make sure she could train under the best possible environment in the lead-up to the 2002 Games. 'I'll meet this girl and HKSU officials personally to see if there is anything I can help with. It's important that she gets the best training before the Games,' said Fok, SAR Sports Federation and Olympic Committee president. Fok will also have the opportunity of watching Tsoi in action at the Games because he will be attending his first IOC full-session council meeting in Salt Lake City. Describing it as 'a dream come true to take part in the pinnacle of sport', Tsoi qualified for the Games after finishing 31st out of 34 competitors in the overall standings, which comprised results from three distances - 500m, 1,000m and 1,500m.