Busch Tampa: 11/13/01

Associated parks:
None

Sunday, November 18, 2001 5:27 PM
I had been looking forward to visiting BGT ever since I first went to the Williamsburg park in 2000. My expectations were met, but the park certainly is different.

First of all, it's far more dense than BGW. That's not all bad though, because it's a lot easier to get around without all of that hiking. It still holds the same marks for landscaping and themes, it's just as clean and the food looked to be about the same quality (I didn't actually have any).

I arrived around 2 pm, having flown into Orlando that morning. It was an easy enough drive, though the sun/shower cycle Florida is known for prevented me from putting the top down on my Mitsu Eclipse rental (which didn't stop me from having that damn song in my head from the TV spot with the hot fare-skin blonde bobbing her head about the whole drive there).

First I went to Montu, because I saw from the parking lot it had empty seats here and there. Wouldn't you know it, it broke down as apparently they had some kind of blocking problem, weird because there was only one train. They kept manually shuttling it back and forth in and out of the station, but couldn't get it to run correctly.

So I started the loop and headed first toward Scorpion. Only the second Schwarzkopf looper I had been on, and it indeed reminded me of a smaller version of the other (Dorney's Laser). Fun little ride.

On to Kumba, it was weird seeing it in real life for the first time. For Florida being notoriously flat, it was cool to see the land formed around the ride, ditto for Montu. Sure enough, Kumba delivered big time. It was very fast and intense, with no mid-course trimming at all. If you sit in a left seat, you're only a couple of feet away from touching the hand rail on the lift going throught that first loop. Cool!

From there it was on to Viper, after I spent some time photographing the tigers in their very cool habitat. It was neat to see the white tigers in particular. Viper, however, was not neat. It's a stock Arrow double Corkscrew, and it hurts like hell. I thought it was much rougher than the Michigan's Adventure installation, in fact.

After a little navigation snafu, I finally made it to Gwazi. It sure looks cool, but what a bummer they weren't dueling them. Seems kind of stupid to build a dueling coaster only to run it in a non-dueling manner. What's worse is that the track gauge is a sloppy mess, where you can see the cars in front of you shift and shuffle all over the place throughout the course. What a disappointment after I liked Roar at SFA so much.

And for the record, sorry, I only count it as one coaster. To me counting it as two is about as reasonable as calling PKI's Racer two just because the turn arounds go in different directions. This is the same thing, only every turn does it.

I got back to Montu and it was finally open. First lap, back right. Just like Raptor, this was the money seat. The whole ride is very well paced, save for the slow section between the second vertical loop and the corkscrew. My second ride was in the front, which offers probably the most amazing visuals of any of the inverts I've been on, save for Dueling Dragons' Fire. I did a few more laps before I left, and even did some in the rain.

Overall, I'm glad that I bought that Platinum pass at BGW, and look forward to using it some more next year. BGT is a nice park and I can't wait to get a better look at the critters. I skipped Rhino Rally because I wanted to save something new for when I was able to return with Steph.

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Jeff - Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com
"As far as I can tell it doesn't matter who you are. If you can believe, there's something worth fighting for..." - Garbage, "Parade"

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Sunday, November 18, 2001 6:23 PM
I thought their Arrow Corkscrew was called Python.
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Don't look down-Oblivion
SLCs kick arse (when smooth).
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Sunday, November 18, 2001 6:25 PM
Oh yeah, maybe that's it.

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Jeff - Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com
"As far as I can tell it doesn't matter who you are. If you can believe, there's something worth fighting for..." - Garbage, "Parade"

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Sunday, November 18, 2001 7:07 PM
OK Jeff...I realize this will be a tough question, but how does Montu compare to Raptor?
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"It looks like they just decided to hang up wheat all over the park" - my friend Steve, describing the FearFest decorating at Kings Island.
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Monday, November 19, 2001 4:56 AM
It's tough... I like the boomerang or batwing or whatever you want to call it much better than the cobra roll, that's for sure. Raptor has the better ending, but Montu has the better first half. I've got this big mix of favorites now for the inverts... Raptor, Montu, Talon and Fire.

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Jeff - Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com
"As far as I can tell it doesn't matter who you are. If you can believe, there's something worth fighting for..." - Garbage, "Parade"

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Monday, November 19, 2001 10:13 AM
Yeah I agree, that element is way better than the cobra roll. This is probably because more inverts have the cobra roll. Also, after the first inversion of that element, it plummets into that tunnel....which is nice.
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Friday, November 23, 2001 7:45 PM
I do count Gwazi as two coasters, because (tah-dah!) like Twisted Sisters and the Dragons, the Lion and Tiger both have different layouts. You can tell that by how much better the Tiger is than the Lion. Not that it sound like you even rode both to figure this out.

If they are the same like you say, I do apologize, but the overview layouts I have of it does not look symettrical at all which means at least at one point both trains go either right or left at the same time to throw that off.

And yes, I still think The Racer is two coasters. If it was just one, that means PKI has three coasters with track lengths of 6800' plus and I really doubt that would be the deal not that it even applies to anything. 
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Danny

PKI 2002- "The Rollercoast is Toast!"

*** This post was edited by Koaster King on 11/24/2001. ***

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Sunday, November 25, 2001 1:21 PM
You are correct in saying Gwazi Lion and Tiger have two different layouts, Koaster King.  Tiger has this sweet left-right-left turn maneuver that I love (it's like skiing) and Lion has (I THINK) a bunny hop instead of that sweet turn.

Either way, I count Gwazi as two, but Racer at PKI as one.  To each his own.

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"That's BS you MF! They're WT!" -- CP's R&D team

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Sunday, November 25, 2001 1:49 PM
I would have to say that Montu is a better ride than Raptor.  Raptor does have that sweet helix at the end, but Montu's barrage of well-placed elements and the trenches make it a better overall experience.  The first time I rode it, as with every coaster, I checked it out to see what I was up against so I'd know what I was going through on the ride, but the trenches make it so disorienting, you forget where you are.  I like cobra rolls better in general, but Montu's batwing is better than any cobra roll because it is half underground.  Oh, and Joe, most people in FL don't know what skiing is, so that's not a very good analogy :)
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Ride the New England Bush!
*** This post was edited by Spacecase8310 on 11/25/2001. ***

*** This post was edited by Spacecase8310 on 11/25/2001. ***

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Sunday, November 25, 2001 8:55 PM
I ran into a British friend at IAAPA who said, "I remember when Montu was called Nemesis." ;)

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Jeff - Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com
"As far as I can tell it doesn't matter who you are. If you can believe, there's something worth fighting for..." - Garbage, "Parade"

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