Friday, July 27, 2012

David Beckham ferries the Olympic torch along the Thames via speedboat... but he has a little help from some friends

By J J Anisiobi and Kirsty Mccormack

He's often seen cruising the streets of California on his beloved motorcycle but it seems that David Beckham's not so confident when it comes to driving speedboats.

The global superstar mesmerised the watching world when his long anticipated role in the London 2012 Olympic Games was finally revealed.

The 37-year-old was charged with driving the Olympic Torch via a speedboat down the River Thames, but it was down to some clever camera work that he accomplished the feat.

Easy rider: David Beckham appeared to be driving a speedboat down the River Thames carrying the Olympic Torch

The real deal: A man can be seen helping David steer the speedboat down the river with one hand on the steering wheel

Although the LA Galaxy footballer was standing at the helm with two hands firmly on the wheel, there was another man who gave a steady hand to the boat.

While viewers at home watched the dapper dressed Beckham power toward Tower Bridge, they were unable to see the other man on the boat crouching next to him.

The father-of-four looked at his best in a black suit with a matching tie and a white shirt as he smoothly smiled down the camera.

The right shot: Viewers at home saw David Beckham driving the speedboat but he was actually not alone in controlling it

Illuminating: Tower Bridge was highlighted by a dramatic fireworks show as the speedboat passed under it

In control: The LA Galaxy footballer took the experience in his stride and smiled throughout

However, the illusion created in part by director Danny Boyle was unable to fool supporters of the games who watched on from the river bank.

As David's boat, which was named Max Power, approached the famous Tower Bridge, a huge explosion of fireworks went off and added to the total experience of the opening ceremony.

Tower Bridge came alight due to the spectacular display as Beckham continued to stand at the head of the boat.

Power mover: Beckham's speedboat was dwarfed by the sheer size of the HMS Belfast

Not alone: Beckham was joined on the boat by Jade Bailey, Arsenal and England Under 17 ladies footballer player

As his boat continued along to the nearest possible water way to the Olympic stadium, his journey and involvement in the proceedings came to end.

David was greeted at the dock by Sir Steve Redgrave who took up the baton and lit his golden torch from the one Beckham had delivered.

As the five time Olympic gold medalist jogged off toward the stadium, David watched on proudly having completed his moment in the spotlight.

Still smiling: The father-of-four looked chuffed as he took in the fantastic view from the speedboat

Coming alive: Tower Bridge was the main attraction as Beckham rode along the River Thames

The footballer - who was famously snubbed from Team GB for the Games - had promised he would still play a part and he certainly didn't disappoint.

Accompanying the father-of-four on the boat was Jade Bailey, Arsenal and England Under 17 ladies footballer player, who actually had the honour of holding the torch.

Mission accomplished: With the stadium in the background the impressive scene was complete

Pleased to meet you: David was greeted by Sir Steve Redgrave at a dock near the stadium

The boat finally docked at Stratford where the flame was taken to the opening ceremony.

The football star’s role in proceedings had been shrouded in mystery.

Beckham has previously spoken of his disappointment at missing out but said he was determined to enjoy the Games as a fan.

A helping hand: The former Manchester United midfielder held the torch in place to pass on the flame

A helping hand: The former Manchester United midfielder held the torch in place to pass on the flame

Game over: With the flame passed on, David stepped back as Sir Redgrave took on the rest of the journey

'I am going to be just proud just to be there as a fan more than anything,' he said. 'In a part of London where I grew up playing soccer over the fields that have been changed now. As a fan and an Englishman I am going to be very proud.'

David had earlier spent time with Michelle Obama where he showed her exactly how to bend it like him, in east London.

Proving the First Lady has that competitive edge she gave Team USA a rousing pep talk just hours ahead of the opening ceremony, urging the athletes to 'have fun - but also win'.

Good friends: David met First Lady Michelle Obama earlier today and gave her a big hug as he greeted her

Bend it like me: David Beckham shows Michelle Obama how to really kick a soccer ball in the right way

She met America's sports stars at their training base in east London, where she thanked them for their inspiring determination and said it was 'otherworldly' to be in London to witness them on the world stage.

Mrs Obama then hosted an exercise session as part of her 'Let's Move!' anti-obesity campaign, where she put on an affectionate and jovial display with the British footballer, who gave her tips on her soccer skills.

Copy cat: The First Lady attempted a kick of the ball under the watchful eye of Manchester United legends Peter Schmeichel and Beckham

source: dailymail

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