“Squid Game: The Challenge” Winner Says She Hasn't Received $4.56 Million Prize 10 Months After Win

A source close to production tells PEOPLE that season 1 winner Mai Whelan was aware of the payment plan and is set to receive her prize now that the Netflix reality show's finale has aired

<p>Pete Dadds/Netflix </p>

Pete Dadds/Netflix

Mai Whelan won a historic $4.56 million when she clinched victory on Squid Game: The Challenge — now she's just ready to have the money in her bank account.

The 55-year-old immigration adjudicator won the cash prize back in February when she beat out 455 other players in a series of grueling eliminations on the Netflix competition series.

“I feel like Tom Cruise in Jerry Maguire,” she told The Times. “Show me the money!”

Addressing Whelan’s claim of a 10-month delay in receiving the payday, a source close to production tells PEOPLE that the winner of the show was aware of the payment plan and is set to receive the prize fund now that the show’s season 1 finale has aired.

Related: Squid Game: The Challenge Trailer Shows 'Savage' Gameplay — and Friends Turned Enemies — for a Cash Prize

<p>Courtesy of Netflix</p> 'Squid Game: The Challenge'

Courtesy of Netflix

'Squid Game: The Challenge'

Whelan said she already spent some of her expected winnings on a new look for the Squid Game gala — including a short haircut, Ralph Lauren dress and Jimmy Choo shoes. 

“I still have buyer’s remorse from that, but I think it’s well-deserved,” she shared.

The Virginia native also hopes to find “a retirement home somewhere,” adding, “We don’t know where yet, and we are happy with where we are. We live on the water. It’s very peaceful.”

Related: How Squid Game: The Challenge's Players Secretly Helped Team Umbrella in the Cookie Game

In addition to her personal plans, Whelan plans to do good with the payday, telling Entertainment Tonight, "I have charitable causes I wanna contribute more to" including "sponsoring kids receiving education and helping the elderly with their basic needs and health care. And also the wildlife and the climate."

"I think those are very important to how we see the world so that way we can live in it and enjoy it for everybody, not just us at the present moment," she explained.

<p>netflix</p> Sam (Player 016), Mai (Player 287), and Phill (Player 451) on 'Squid Game: The Challenge'


Sam (Player 016), Mai (Player 287), and Phill (Player 451) on 'Squid Game: The Challenge'

Related: Squid Game: The Challenge Favorite Says Competitors Used Condoms as Chapstick During Filming

Whelans victory came after she and fellow competitor Phill played a final game of  Rock, Paper, Scissors.

"I don't know whether to cry or to cheer. I don't know what to do," she told Phill after winning the game.

In a confessional interview, she said, "Today just validates that anything is possible. Even when [you] feel down and afraid, you have to pick yourself up, be a strong person and focus. Whatever you fear is, fight it with everything you got, and you can accomplish anything. And I've proven that tonight. I am the winner."

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Season 1 of Squid Game: The Challenge can be streamed in full on Netflix. Recruitment for season 2 is now open at SquidGameCasting.com

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