"In 2002, ACE introduced Coaster Landmark Award status. This award was designed to recognize coasters of historical significance that may not qualify for ACE Coaster Classic status."
It goes on to say that 3 a year are awarded. I belive this is because they have one award for each of the annual national events. Spring Con, Coaster Con, and Preservation Con. *** Edited 6/19/2007 2:10:58 PM UTC by Jason Hammond***
I definitely find KI's Racer to be of historical significance. It really was a MAJOR contribution that helped to spur a wooden-coaster building boom that leads us to where we are today.
Much like our discussion of Beast, it's not necessarily about what the coaster IS today, as much as what it WAS in its own time-frame. Probably important also to factor in that the television media (Brady Bunch, Partridge Family, etc.) really *showcased* the ride, and helped get amusement park visitation back "on track"...so to speak. Not everyone made it to FL or CA as easily in those days as we do today, so KI being a REGIONAL park was a big deal too.
As always, feel free to argue the opposing viewpoint, this is MY perspective. :)
Both Dippers at Camden Park are considered ACE "classics" not "landmarks" or something like that. ;) They will lose the "classic" status if they decide to put dividers and seat belts on them. Let's hope that never happens. :)
Besides the reasons Bill gave, I grew up with the Racer as well as The Beast so again, it's a sentimental thing and I think the coaster deserves it. :) It's not in it's prime anymore but it's still the KI Racer. :)
I rode it a few weeks ago and found the backwards to be MUCH smoother.
*** Edited 6/19/2007 5:39:42 PM UTC by coasterqueenTRN***
Well, when those parks are involved in a national event, i wouldn't be suprised at all if those were to get honored as well. At Spring Con they dedicated Giant Dipper at Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. *** Edited 6/19/2007 9:45:40 PM UTC by Jason Hammond***
Rebel Yell was already honored in 2003 during that year's ACE Coaster Con.
As for KI's Racer, I'm sure it was honored for helping the resurgence of the wooden roller coaster during the 1970s, and because it was the first wooden coaster installed in a major regional theme park that was built after Disneyland opened. *** Edited 6/19/2007 9:55:00 PM UTC by Brother Dave***
Both me, the coaster enthusiast, and my friends, the "GPers", absolutely loved riding The Racer on our trip last summer, so much so that we relapped the reverse car three times rather than take a lap on The Beast, Flight of Fear, or any of the other rides we could have taken a spin on.
I'm not surprised by this. It's a real crowd-pleaser.
[Nitro Dave -- Track Record: 231 coasters]
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I’m mostly with gator on this one…the award is more a statement about what the ride has done for coaster popularity in general.
I will opine that this is a coaster that I think was terribly affected by the advent of the individual ratcheting lap bar. There was a time when KI’s Racer was an airtime God. Those orange bastard bars ruined everything that was great about the ride. My last few trips left me wondering if a return to the single bar could save the ride in its current condition though. The trains seemed to meander through the course with barley enough momentum to float a Kleenex. This was not always the case.
Personally, I think Blue Streak is a better out-and-back these days. This was NEVER a consideration in the 1970’s and early 1980’s.