No Finish Line
WISDOM for granted, not even flagging off contestants on The Amazing Race Asia (TARA) 5 , a job that he has done for five seasons now. For him, every day is a learning process. “I always bring my ‘A’ game when I’m in front of the camera,” he says. To achieve this, the highly driven Singapore-based California native confesses that he still records himself practising his lines and reviews the footage to see what he can improve on, right down to the tiniest details such as twitching and blinking.
A large part of competing in TARA (and winning) is being fit enough to complete physical challenges, and, for Wu, this requirement isn’t just restricted to the contestants. “Working out and practising yoga give me an adrenaline rush. I love being in motion, and that’s why I enjoy swimming, running and going to the gym,” he says. The 44-year-old also views exercise as a long-term investment of sorts. “I want to enjoy my time now and still look good when I hit 70 or 80,” he adds.
Like so many other reality shows, the emotional highs and lows that contestants constantly battle with are what makes TARA such compulsive viewing. As its host, Wu is given a unique insight into the human psyche. “It’s amazing to see how various people deal with stress and pressure differently,” he notes. “They fall, crumble, crash hard on the ground and pick themselves up all just to get to the finish line.”
Witnessing contestants’ sheer grit, determination and ability to think on their feet has made Wu realise the importance of pushing yourself when it comes to achieving what you want in your career. So be prepared to grab any opportunities that come your way, and always have a plan B, he adds. “There is an expiration date for hosts, models and personalities, so it’s up to us to continue life’s journey on a different path,” he muses. “
After hosting, my other career options could be script writing, directing, or even producing my own show.”
Naturally, helming a show centred on a race around the world with quick 24-hour pit stops to allow contestants and crew a little R’n’R means Wu has learned to live out of a suitcase. “ has taken him, Wu isn’t one to believe the hype. He relies on a trusted inner circle to keep him level-headed, while personally ensuring that he “stays away from negative people.” The proud father of two also credits his children for his success. “They inspire me. They are the ones who keep me going,” he says, citing his daughter’s passion for life “as telling me not to give up and keep doing what I love.” The season finale for The Amazing Race Asia 5 is on 15 December, 9pm on AXN CH701 and AXN HD CH721 on Astro. “I regret not learning Mandarin when I was younger. Step out of your comfort zone and learn a language.” “Be prepared for disappointments and failure. I’ve been rejected so many times, but I never gave up fighting for what I wanted.” “With social media, the world is so small. It takes a second to get information on something from LA even when you’re living in China. Knowing more about a country and its culture will bring more colour, excitement and inspiration to your life.”