One thing always perplexed me regarding the Kennywood Racer. Why, after a 75 foot lift, is the first drop on this coaster only 45 feet? Racer seems to be the opposite of Jack Rabblt. Jack Rabbit has a short lift with a big drop. Racer has a long lift with a relatively small drop.
That disappointing first drop is the only thing wrong with this ride. The rest of the ride is great with those twisting turns and, of course, the race.
By the way, has Kennywood ever considered modifying the ride to make that first drop bigger? Could this be done without destroying the character of the ride?
I heard somewhere that they considered a long time ago modifying the ride to wind around towards Kiddieland and such and come back ... think mini-Lightning Racer. But, the idea became too expensive, and would have required way too much modification.
The orginial racer actually had a hill under the first drop, so the first drop could only drop far enough to allow clearance of the trains going over the hill directly underneath. That hill has been removed and now the ride just drops after the last turn.
I love Racer. The first drop isn't much but the ride definitely picks up speed after that. I hope Kennywood would never make major changes to the ride- it's fine as it is. If they ever feel the need to mess around with wood, they should build another wood coaster!
Its a good ride, but the major flaw of it isn't the first drop. It is the poor racing aspect of the coaster. The only time the 2 trains interact is off the first hill and in the final straight. After the first turn, it takes the trailing train 2 turns to catch up with the leading train. Most racing coasters at least alternate directions in the turns or have split turns.
Is the split turnaround even on that coaster, or is one side slightly shorter? The turns after the lift hill are uneven, so one side has a shorter route.
^No but one train (the blue train) was more well oiled/heavier/something else that made it faster the day I was there. Despite both trains being randomly filled the entire time I was in line the blue train allways won the last day I was there (no matter what track it was on.)
There used to be a car from the old 4-bench Racer train at the Heinz History Center in the Strip District. (Actually it's probably still there, but I haven't been there in a few years. I really should go back sometime soon...)