Supposively there is some contract with Busch Gardens and B&M about B&M not building another Diving Coaster within "X" miles of a Busch Gardens park within "X" number of years. My question is, or my thought is did Cedar Point look to build one of these diving coaster but was refused by B&M and therefore they turned to Intamin to build a roller coaser in retaliation with a 105 degree drop to take the record here in the U.S. for the degree of the drop?
I know that we will never know, and that any answer will just be pure thought but I wanted to see what others think.
Long answer: No... totally different concepts at work here. I know rumors of exclusivity contracts for B&M dive machines have roamed the internet for years, but in general, it's bad business to turn down someone's money for your product if they want it. Especially since Cedar Point isn't near any Busch parks, nor does it compete directly with them. B&M can only gain from not limiting the availability of their products.
Aside from that issue, though, you still have to look at Maverick as more than one steep drop. Oblivion and G5 are one-trick ponies; Sheikra and Griffon have a few more tricks up their sleeves. But Maverick has so much more... launches, airtime hills, tunnels, sidewinding turns, corkscrews, an inline twist. I don't think Maverick is a response to anything other than the fact that Cedar Point hadn't built a small-to-midsize ride since Iron Dragon. Clearly, the goal was to be creative and attempt something new rather than copy a ride in Florida.
(And besides, Cedar Point already has two rides with 90-degree drops. Sheikra and Griffon didn't take any "records" away from them.)
B&M can only gain from not limiting the availability of their products.
Although the word is that some companies, like the Skycoaster folks, are actually very strict about this sort of thing.
By the way, Mystery Mine will have a 97 Degree Drop, so Maverick is not taking any records there. *** Edited 2/11/2007 4:00:36 PM UTC by Jason Hammond***
For example, the in-house company that made the "water coasters" at Schlitterbahn, NBGS, makes water coasters for other water parks. They had a unique product that enhanced the draw for their own park, but they didn't limit themselves to only making rides for Schlitterbahn. They could have, but it would've limited their business. Now they're a global company. When B&M's are built globally, it wouldn't make sense to limit that business regionally.
I know if I were B&M I'd do some math figuring how many dive coasters I could reatlistically build in that particular market and tack on my profit onto Busch's bill. Busch gets an exclusive product and I get paid more.
The only reason I'm skeptical is unless dive coasters are also coming to the Sea World parks (maybe, kinda doubt it) I'm not sure where Busch's competition would be. Tampa is mainly competing with Orlando, where Sea World is a non-issue obviously, Disney is a non-issue as far as coasters go, and Universal could potentially build a dive coaster but if announced tomorrow would probably take a very long time to complete given no construction has been sighted, and a dive coaster at IOA or the studios would probably be a massive undertaking.
Near Williamsburg you have an SF park (I'll eat my shoe if Shapiro builds a B&M of any kind at SFA any time soon), and two newly owned Cedar Fair properties. I could see some vague potential for Carowinds or KD to build a dive machine but I wouldn't say it's likely, and even if it were likely BGW is more of a destination park and serves a pretty different niche than either CF parks nearby.
I'm just not sure how much of a benefit Busch would get from freezing-out other dive machines unless they didn't have to jump through a lot of hoops to make it happen. In other words I hope they didn't pay a bunch if indeed they make that sort of deal.
Boring Sunday, sorry.
Now, back on the Intamin topic. I don't really see the Dive Machine as a big threat to Intamin. The company usually isn't as reactive: how many pipeline/non-impulse inverted/floorless/flying coasters did they build? Not many, if any.
Really, I don't think anyone at B&M and Intamin are loosing sleep over each other's designs. Now Vekoma...
I think this ride will have a completely different feel and appeal then a B&M dive coaster. Not that Sheikra or Griffon are not world class, but this coaster will not feel like Intamins version of a dive coaster at all. B&M dive coasters hold you before the big vertical drop, giving anticipation for the big element of the ride. Sheikra and Griffon both have 2 vertical drops, so clearly that is the key elements in the ride. Really the drop on Maverick is not that much steeper than other Intamin hypers, such as Superman Ride of Steel or Millenium Force. I doubt that the first drop will be what people will be talking about after they ride Maverick, it just seems the ride has other elements that will be more memorable.
With B&M were out of the picture for SF, and Intamin having Maverick which should be one hell of an extreme ride and Furious Baco - I think Intamin's future is looking much brighter (at this moment) compared to B&M.
Not sure SF will be buying Intamin either but Intamin certainly appears to have some exciting products compared to B&M (bit stale, and everyone already has an inverted).
*** Edited 2/11/2007 11:26:38 PM UTC by ApolloAndy***
And I know many who think that Intamins are FAR more unreliable than B&M flyers or dive machines. I have been to many parks with coasters (over 40 so far in the last 2 years) and it is almost always the Intamins that are down...) If the B&M are down a lot at SFGA, I think that is more of a Six Flags maintenance issue.
Just my two cents...
Matt mentioned that B&M's market may be shrinking (loosing SF), and I was just complimenting that point with Intamin positioning themselves well for future growth. Reliability and safety aside.
B&M are using magnetic brakes on most of their new coasters since 2002 (Silverstar being the first). Anyway, magnetic brakes are far more reliable than friction brakes, since most of them have no moving parts.
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