Stunt cyclist Joe Maher cut from London 2012 opening ceremony

Gutted – Joe Maher, 25, a stunt bike rider, was due to perform at the opening cermony of the Olympic Games next week

Gutted – Joe Maher, 25, a stunt bike rider, was due to perform at the opening cermony of the Olympic Games next week

First published in News

A STUNT biker was left devastated after being dropped from the Olympic opening ceremony just 12 days before his long-awaited performance.

Joe Maher, 25, from Westcliff , was told on Sunday his four-minute appearance in the Isles of Wonder spectacular had been cut due to security and time concerns.

He had been preparing for the once-in-a-lifetime performance since he was selected in March, alongside three other British stunt bikers.

Mr Maher said: “When the organisers called me up and said they had some really bad news I knew straight away what it was going to be, but it wasn't until I got off the phone that it started to sink in.

“I was meant to be doing this amazing one-off show and then it was just taken away through no fault of my own.

“I am used to doing trials in front of 5,000 or 10,000 people, but to go to the Olympics and perform in front of millions is a whole new level.”

He began stunt riding at the age of 12, and soon went on to join Mad – the world’s largest mountain bike stunt and trials display team.

Trials riding sees bikers test their impressive handling skills over a range of obstacles.

The Isles of Wonder show, inspired by Shakespeare’s Tempest, was to see four stunt riders showcase their talents alongside 50 BMX riders.

However, due to fears it would overrun and not finish by 12.30am the director of the opening ceremony Danny Boyle, was forced to cut next Friday’s spectacle by 30 minutes.

Mr Maher slammed the organisation of the Olympics and £27million opening ceremony, revealing he only attended four rehearsals due to repeated cancellations.

He said: “If the opening ceremony was today I wouldn’t have a clue what I was doing.

“They have had so many years to prepare, you would have thought everything would be organised way in advance.”

To see clips of Joe in action visit www.youtube.com

Comments (6)

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2:29pm Sun 22 Jul 12

emcee says...

Life is full of disapointments. There are a lot more people worse off than you. I am afraid you will need to get over it.
Life is full of disapointments. There are a lot more people worse off than you. I am afraid you will need to get over it. emcee
  • Score: 1

5:15pm Sun 22 Jul 12

firedog says...

I can see a lot of effort and hours of practice you have put in,and I too would
be dissapointed.You are probably more skilled than many other so called
athletes,and thats from someone who is not in the least bit interested
in the olympic hype.
I can see a lot of effort and hours of practice you have put in,and I too would be dissapointed.You are probably more skilled than many other so called athletes,and thats from someone who is not in the least bit interested in the olympic hype. firedog
  • Score: 1

5:26pm Sun 22 Jul 12

APR says...

".......Mr Maher slammed the organisation of the Olympics and £27million opening ceremony, revealing he only attended four rehearsals due to repeated cancellations....."

This alone must have sowed the seeds of doubt ?
".......Mr Maher slammed the organisation of the Olympics and £27million opening ceremony, revealing he only attended four rehearsals due to repeated cancellations....." This alone must have sowed the seeds of doubt ? APR
  • Score: 2

10:34am Mon 23 Jul 12

mr_happy says...

Another person let down by the Olympics. Add it to the many more thousands. It is bad how people are being treated over this fiasco.
Another person let down by the Olympics. Add it to the many more thousands. It is bad how people are being treated over this fiasco. mr_happy
  • Score: 1

11:39am Mon 23 Jul 12

PJR-121 says...

I can understand his disappointment, but saying they've had years to plan etc isn't a just argument. Most films are cut due to time constraints just days before their premieres.

Mr Happy - how many more thousands have been let down by the Olympics then?
I can understand his disappointment, but saying they've had years to plan etc isn't a just argument. Most films are cut due to time constraints just days before their premieres. Mr Happy - how many more thousands have been let down by the Olympics then? PJR-121
  • Score: 0

12:32pm Tue 24 Jul 12

R85 says...

Cut just days before the release? Surely the movie would have been all done and dusted a long, long time before that? Prob spends a month or so in the editing/special effects room after its finished doesn’t it?
Cut just days before the release? Surely the movie would have been all done and dusted a long, long time before that? Prob spends a month or so in the editing/special effects room after its finished doesn’t it? R85
  • Score: 0

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