Final Results of the 2001 Internet Steel Tracked Roller Coaster Poll released

Posted Tuesday, March 5, 2002 4:59 AM | Contributed by Mitch Hawker

Six Flags New England's Superman: Ride of Steel is the top steel coaster in North America, Expedition GeForce of Germany's Holiday Park took the top spot for the rest of the world. Unfortunately, only four people who had ridden the German ride took the poll, and they only had enough experience for a comparison to be made to about one third of the top 30 rides.

Cedar Point's Millennium Force and Six Flags Great Adventure's Nitro round out the top 4. Alton Towers' Nemesis placed 5th, 1999 #1 Six Flags Darien Lake's Superman - Ride of Steel, and Busch Gardens Williamsburg's Apollo's Chariot tied for 6th.

The Favorite Wood Coaster category finished third, with people preferring #1 Superman: Ride of Steel to their favorite wood coaster 15 to 10 with 3 people rating them as equal.

Link: Internet Roller Coaster Poll

Tuesday, March 5, 2002 5:10 AM
You could not have paid me to believe that Hypersonic would crack the top 25.
jeremy
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A Nigerian Muslim sharia court sentences a pregnant woman found guilty of adultery to be stoned to death, but only after she has finished weaning her baby.
This is known in some parts of the Muslim world as compassionate conservatism
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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 5:13 AM

And how 'bout the fact that FOF has cracked the top 50! I think it says a lot of a 6 year old ride that had a very minor, but significant change.

Shaggy

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Shaggy
A.K.A. John K.

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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 5:40 AM
Arrggh. Its temporarily down!

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Live on the edge and remember the Twist of Fate.

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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 5:41 AM
True, Shaggy. Pre-modification, FOF wouldn't crack my personal top 200!

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- Peabody

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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 6:50 AM
I expected this result. I was one of the four to vote for EGF, and when I rode it last year, of the other people who had ridden both MF and SRoS (I haven't been on either), all thought EGF was better than MF, but not as good as SRoS. After the ACE trip this year EGF should have a far higher number of riders in future polls, and it'll be interesting to see how those new people vote.
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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 6:52 AM

Like Jeremy, I'm amazed that Hypersonic cracked the top 25. I love the ride, but there's so little TO it.

I'll note that at least my personal #1, Phantom's Revenge, higher ;)

Another surprise to me is that Batwing (#58) is that much higher than X-Flight (#71) (they're the exact same coaster, although Batwing is in a much nicer setting -- a fair testament that "theming" DOES matter)

So there we have it. Another poll completed, and one that attempts to really compare every coaster across the board (the head-to-head spreadsheet is pretty interesting)

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--Greg
"The collective women in your life have more baggage than a Samsonite factory..."
My page

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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 7:14 AM

I really like Mitch's system, but I don't really understand it. Can someone tell me how the win / loss record is determined?

Also, I really wish more people would take the poll to give more accurate ratings (especially overseas).

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The legend lives!

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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 7:43 AM
Well, I can't get to the site right now (I hate GeoCities), but the basics as I understand it are as follows:

Mitch's software goes through all the submitted ballots, and for each coaster in the list, compares it to every other coaster. For instance, 17 ballots listed both Phantom's Revenge and Hypersonic. 11 of them ranked PR higher than Hypersonic (exact positions don't matter in this single head-to-head comparison, only relative positions). 5 put Hypersonic higher, and 1 tied.

So, Phantom's Revenge scored a "win" over Hypersonic, and Hypersonic received a "loss".

This happens for every possible combination of coaster. If NOBODY has ridden a particular pair of coasters, then no win/loss/tie can be scored for it.

Then, the final ranking is calculated based on a percentage of wins (with ties counting as "half" a win). PR had 164 wins, 17 losses, and 2 ties, for an effective winning score of 165/183, or 0.9016.

Yes, I AM a numbers geek at times. Never went into Stats, though -- go figure. That's my sister's job ;)

This is why I find the head-to-head spreadsheet so interesting -- you can see how a particular coaster stacks up against another specific ride. For instance, although Phantom's Revenge ends up ranked lower than Dueling Dragons Fire (18th vs 11th), PR actually BEAT Fire in the head-to-head.

--Greg, who notes that only 4 people preferred Ice to Fire, out of 52 ballots that listed both.

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--Greg
"The collective women in your life have more baggage than a Samsonite factory..."
My page
*** This post was edited by GregLeg on 3/5/2002. ***

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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 7:44 AM
well, you (GregLeg, 2hostyl) at least got to ride Stan's scream machine, top-25 or not, lol....

And yes, theming DOES matter, even if it's only to me...

FoF, pre-laps, cracked my BOTTOM ten, post-laps, WAAAAY better...can't see calling it a "minor" change when it makes THAT much of a difference...

Finally, Goliath for me ranked right between S:RoS and MF....S:RoS being the closest thing to "Heaven on Earth". Nitro ranks a close fourth...(preparing for incoming "shelling")....

Post GregLeg's post, count me in on the BUNCH that preferred Fire to Ice...(but not until recently)... *** This post was edited by rollergator on 3/5/2002. ***

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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 7:53 AM
Interesting poll, especially when you plot the results back against your own rankings. Here's how I did it (using Excel)....

COLUMN 1
Take your personal ranking and divide by number you've ridden. For me and Maggie, I had her at 4 of 48, so 4/48 = 0.08

COLUMN 2
Take the poll ranking and divide by the number in the the poll. So for Maggie, that's 13 of 213, so 13/213 = 0.06

COLUMN 3
Subtract your result from the poll result. For Maggie, that 0.061-0.083 = -0.02

Anything around -0.05 to 0.05 means your ranking pretty well agrees with the poll. Greater than 0.30 means you thought much more highly of that coaster than most, and less than -0.30 means you didn't think much of it, compared to most.

Doing this for myself revealed my sentimental bias for Vortex at PKI with a 0.38, but I had two interesting points pop out.....

I got 0.33 for Manhattan Express. While I thought it was a decent ride, I guess I like it comparatively better than most.

I got -0.32 for Big Thunder Mountain @ WDW. I didn't care much for this ride, but apparently quite a few others did.

Try this little math game out. You might surprise yourself!!!

Later,
EV
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"Just remember, wherever you go, there you are." - Buckaroo Banzai *** This post was edited by EchoVictor on 3/5/2002. ***

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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 9:57 AM
Yes, I'm very proud of my baby; S:RoS. Finally, she got the spot she really deserved;)

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SFNE drops the "floor" on SFNE for 2002! Visit www.geocities.com/sfneguy for info. and pics of SFNE, including NEW constr. pics of B:DK!!! Formerly known as srosatsfne. I am NOT SFNEFreak!

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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 10:09 AM

Wow, I have damn "good taste" in coasters -- my top three is consists of the top three US coasters...just in a different order. ;)

Joe, who knows polls don't matter, but loves this one nonetheless.

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"Look for the big black sack of Mofuggin Nuts at your local grocery store". -- Radio ad in FL

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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 10:45 AM
Greg,

Great analysis.

It should be remembered though, that the head-to-head spreadsheet is not the official results as it contains the wood coaster category, coasters with two or fewer riders, and 1 mutual rider comparisons (although the 1 mutual rider comparisons are not reflected in each coaster's overall W-L-T record as listed in the spreadsheet).

The spreadsheet is however a great tool to visually help better understand how the poll works and how each pair of coasters did relative to one another.

As an example of how the spreadsheet ordering can differ, see that Dueling Dragons - Fire is actually 10th (rather than 11th) in the official results due to the wood coaster category not being included in the official results. Phantom's Revenge, on the other hand, is officially #18 (as you stated) as the removal of the wood category bumped it up one notch but the fact that Olympia Looping benefitted more than PR from the elimination of 2 rider coasters from the official results caused OL to move ahead of PR and PR to drop back down to #18.

To help with the geocities bandwidth problems, I have zipped the text files that contain all the completed ballots for the different polls (some of them were more than 500k in size).

*** This post was edited by Mitch Hawker on 3/5/2002. ***

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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 11:03 AM
Once again...if they would have set the poll up as a fill in the bubble, user friendly poll, they would have had a much larger audience of voters. I'm not complaining about the outcome, because I didn't waste the time to decipher the ballot, but I think it would have been much different had it been a "fill in the dot" ballot.
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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 11:27 AM
Ooo Nitro did real good. Awright now!!!
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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 11:41 AM
Robbery, Steel Force is better than 28th.
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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 12:02 PM
In your opinion, sure. In MY opinion, I found it overbraked, and not nearly as interesting as other hypers. That's the whole point of polls like this -- to collate opinions. It's like an opinion poll -- you may not agree, because you're perfectly welcome to your own opinion. I'll bet that in a raw popularity contest, Steel Force would rate even worse for lack of the sheer number of riders that coasters like Maggie and MF get each year...


Mitch -- good point on using the spreadsheet. At the time I posted, I had the Excel sheet locally, but couldn't reach the GeoCities page.

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--Greg
"The collective women in your life have more baggage than a Samsonite factory..."
My page
*** This post was edited by GregLeg on 3/5/2002. ***

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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 12:54 PM
I think that it's hard to believe that the Santa Monica WestCoaster ranked higher than Flashback.

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"Nothin wrong with a little airtime"

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Tuesday, March 5, 2002 12:59 PM

The reason I like this poll is that it is not "Fill in the Dot." That would result in awful coasters at CP beating the wonderful coasters of Europe. Deciphering the poll is not hard, and especially not a waste of time, for me at least.

This is the only poll that I know of that accurately tabulates best, worst, and most average coasters. I too, am a number geek, and I really like all of Mitch's analysis. Thank you!!

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