Why is the First Drop on the Kennnywood racer so Shallow?

Tuesday, June 20, 2006 1:40 PM
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?

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Tuesday, June 20, 2006 1:43 PM
It was a miscalculation, according to the Kennywood book. Yes, it was considered. No, it can't. That is why the Pippen became the Thunderbolt.

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Tuesday, June 20, 2006 1:46 PM
You'll have to channel Mr. Miller and ask him that one.

Considering they returned the front facade to its original (historical) appearance, I doubt they'd do anything to change the actual layout itself, even if it would make for a better ride.

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Tuesday, June 20, 2006 7:16 PM
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.
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Tuesday, June 20, 2006 9:51 PM
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.
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Wednesday, June 21, 2006 9:04 AM
That makes sense.

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!

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Wednesday, June 21, 2006 3:05 PM
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.

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Wednesday, June 21, 2006 3:09 PM
Don't forget that Racer was designed in 1927- long before computers could help designers make rides like Lightning Racer work as well as they do!
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Wednesday, June 21, 2006 3:10 PM
^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.)
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Wednesday, June 21, 2006 4:01 PM
That happens. Maybe the other train was rotated with the spare train that needed time to warm/loosen up.
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Wednesday, June 21, 2006 4:35 PM
Correct me if I'm wrong (and I'm sure someone will) but I recall that the Racer is actually 1 track. Your train leaves from one side of the loading platform and returns to the opposite side.
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Wednesday, June 21, 2006 4:44 PM
It kills me to go over by the laughing gal and see the pics of people enjoying this ride on four bench no lap restraint trains.

PTC's ruin this ride, Even with the single bar the divider suckith.

Chuck

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Wednesday, June 21, 2006 4:44 PM
^Correct
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Wednesday, June 21, 2006 4:57 PM
Chuck,

What kind of 4-bench trains were on the ride? I could have sworn I once saw an old photo of the Racer that had the NAD Century Flyers running.

Just curious.

But I love the Racer, there is really one row that is *the row* and that is on the side starting closest to Jack Rabbit in the back row. That last drop can be quite a doozy.

~Rob Willi

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Wednesday, June 21, 2006 5:51 PM
Wahoo, you're correct. One of what, 3 I think?, "mobius" coasters left in existance. I think the "crossover" is supposed to happen on the turn over the station.
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Wednesday, June 21, 2006 5:58 PM
The crossover happens before you hit the lift. Watch next time you ride.

If the opposite train is on your left in the station, it will be on your right on the lift and vice versa.

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Wednesday, June 21, 2006 8:49 PM
Oh yea ... duh. Geez, being shown up by a country bum- Ohioan on my homepark ... that's pathetic ;)
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Wednesday, June 21, 2006 9:39 PM
actually that pic looks like a Vettel open front train but it could be old PTC.

Chuck

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Wednesday, June 21, 2006 10:07 PM
I think that they are old style PTC. Compare them to the pics of the coaster trains at Euclid Beach, those were PTC/Miller.
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Wednesday, June 21, 2006 10:08 PM
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...)

*** Edited 6/22/2006 2:12:36 AM UTC by GregLeg***

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