Tycoon's son scores award for support of ice hockey

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 10 June, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 10 June, 2009, 12:00am

His company's hotel development in Wan Chai might face some stiff opposition but it was a unanimous decision to give Thomas Jefferson Wu the Jim Cahill Award for his contribution to ice hockey in Hong Kong. Last Saturday, the Hong Kong Typhoons Ice Hockey Club, which operates youth programmes, honoured Sir Gordon Wu Ying-sheung's son. That's because in addition to being Hopewell Holdings' co-managing director, the Canada-raised Thomas Wu runs another association for the sport, the Hong Kong Academy of Ice Hockey, presenting tournaments and league games - in which Wu is a prominent player.

'It's a great recognition for me and the team to develop ice hockey here,' Wu said about the prize. 'We've worked alongside the Typhoons in training young kids and introducing the sport. We're trying to train local kids too. Those people who are genuinely interested in ice hockey are all working on the same page.'

The trophy is named after a Hong Kong Association volunteer who died on the eve of a local youth championship game in 2002. Wu, who received the prize from team chairman John Laroche (left), humbly played down his part in growing the game here. 'The good and experienced team under our coach Barry Beck do most of the work. I just act as financial support and connections.'

Wu is probably the highest-profile ice-hockey enthusiast in Hong Kong and undeniably he has been the game's biggest promoter here, so he deserves to be named the award's fourth recipient. We just wonder, if he donates a public ice rink as part of the proposed Hopewell Towers project, will that help him win some public support for his planned high-rise? 'We have looked into it, but it didn't make sense there,' he said.