The fact that the riders had their arms up for the duration of the ride is probably due to the fact that the train is probably full of ACE Members. I know SFGAdv just did a film shoot on Kingda Ka for a TV show and asked ACE to try and gather some riders for them. *** Edited 6/20/2008 1:42:41 PM UTC by dragonoffrost***
It looks like it has a lot more air than a typcial GCI. Lots of big and little bunnies in there in a couple of places. I think it has great potential. My dislike of GCI's is almost exclusively due to emphasis on twisting instead of airtime.
GCI has no airtime? Wow... I don't know what that was I felt on Thunderhead, but seemed like I was out of me seat quite a bit. Not to mention that last Monday at Herhsey Lightning Racer surprised me with the amount of air I was getting. Thats not to say that the emphasis is not on the twists and turns, but trust me, the guys at GCI want to make sure their rides are the most talked about and well rounded.
This coaster looks like a great ride. Somewhere I had read that this was a copy Thunderbird at Powerland in Finland. I am not sure if that is the case, but it doesn't look like it to me.
^Other than being built at SFSTL, and givin the name change, this is Thunderbird.
As being on of the lucky ones to go on ECC's Scandi trip last year, I can tell ya that Thunderbird was a fantastic coaster. Since EK is identical to Thunderbird, I don't see why the ride should run any differently.
As far as a 2009 clone at SFMM, I'll just say that I hope not. I want to see newer designs, different layouts from GCI. Every one of them so far have worked out quite well, let's keep that trend going.
dragonoffrost said: The fact that the riders had their arms up for the duration of the ride is probably due to the fact that the train is probably full of ACE Members. I know SFGAdv just did a film shoot on Kingda Ka for a TV show and asked ACE to try and gather some riders for them. *** Edited 6/20/2008 1:42:41 PM UTC by dragonoffrost***
So you used the words fact, and probably, two times each, in the same sentence to try, and convey that the train was full of ACE members.
How about this? It's a "fact" that you "probably" don't know what your talking about.
I know of only a couple of enthusiasts who got to attend - the rest were actors and PR. Quick review of the ride: much better than I thought it would be, although it took some warming up. Night rides last night were awesome. Airtime everywhere and incredible pacing. My favorite part was the s-turn/bunny hop/ left turn combo. Back seat is the best seat in the house, but the front is pretty good too.
I learned from Renegade last year that the GCI's take a little while to break in. Opening day rides this year on Renegade were just as good as night rides from last year. The early morning rides last year were pretty tame.
Six Flags had "Ride and Scream" 9am opening for season pass holders last Saturday, yesterday, and will again next Saturday. Evel Knievel wasn't listed as one of the rides included in the ert, so I was hoping to get a few other rides in and get in line for EK to go on it at least once before the 10am crowd rushed the ride. I got to the park just a couple minutes past 9 and EK was running WITH PEOPLE ON IT as I got out of my car. I got 5 rides in before 10, and I don't know if I'm not as picky as some on here or the wheels are already loosening up, but it seemed to FLY in the morning. I always go for the back seat of any coaster, so I did seat 12 first. I LOVED IT! The air, the smoothness of the transitions, and the speed were PERFECT! I NEVER ride woodies with my hands up, but I actually DID ride EK the second time with my hands up (in seat 12 again, right seat this time, left seat the first time) because it was so SMOOTH that first ride.
I did ride 3 in seat 10, ride 4 in seat 2, and back to 12 for ride 5. I never held onto the lap bar on any of those rides, just rested my arms on top of it. I really don't like the pushme-pullyou experience of ANY coaster in the front, but EK was still LOTS of fun with that happening. There is definitely better air in the front on the lower hills, but I still prefer the back of the train just like other rides.
I don't know what type of experience others are expecting from Evel Knievel: The Ride, but I was blown away by this coaster. It's AWESOME! I imagine this type of ride is the closest any of us living today will get to one of Fred Church's more intense designs. I am looking forward to riding Renegade this week at Valleyfair, but the compact, head-chopper, low-lying hop experience of Evel Knievel is just not there in most of GCI's coasters from what I can see - they seem to be all turns. Not that I think they don't look fun, but I'm glad we got the Thunderbird clone HERE (and I talked to one of the designers who was admiring his creation from a distance yesterday morning, and he said it is almost EXACTLY the same as Thunderbird, not the design switching that 2nd to last turnaround from counterclockwise around the 1st swoop curve to a clockwise move that was shown in the press release) instead of a GCI coaster with nonstop turns like Hershey Wildcat or spread out like Renegade.
And the shirts with the Evel jumpsuit design were given to press and I think first ride contest winners to wear Thursday. There were a lot of regular people yesterday with their hands up on the ride, so I imagine MOST enthusiasts will be doing so, and a lot of the people there Thursday were coaster enthusiast members of the press, thus explaining the whole train with their hands raised.
I think a lot of people are misunderstanding what my original post about everyone on the video having their arms up during the ride. My point was actually that most photo/video shoots are shown with riders arms down per safety instructions. IIRC, almost every promo video shot for CP has riders abiding by this rule. (not going on a this-park-is-better-than-that-park tangent. Just using CP as an example.)
The coaster is a lot of fun -- have ridden all of the "state side" GCIIs except the Roar clones, and this is by far my favorite of the bunch. The fact that it is hard to tell which of the twisted tracks you are going to go on next makes the ride a lot of fun.
I can hardly wait to ride this thing after it has had time to break in a little more. However, after riding it on "opening day" for the GP, I can say that it a lot of fun.