TPW’s 10 most anticipated coasters for 2018

In our latest article we announced our plans for the coming year. The main trip will be of course our trip to the USA where we’ll be visiting 15 parks and riding 156 roller coasters! So when making a top ten list of the roller coasters we are most exited to ride this year, it can’t be a surprise it became an all American top ten.

To be clear: there are so many theme parks and roller coasters we are so exited for! But some roller coasters are just more appealing than others. In any way, this is a list based on personal preferences. So if you ask where this roller coaster you really like is, it doesn’t mean I find that coaster bad or I’m not excited for it. It means I just prefer other roller coasters a bit more.

Roller coasters that I already have done aren’t taken up in this list as well. So if you ask yourself why you can’t find Top Thrill Dragster (Cedar Point) or Outlaw Run (Silver Dollar City) in the list, it’s because I have already done those and this list is about the new roller coaster I’ll be doing this year. I can assure you I’m really excited to re ride those roller coasters though. So let’s kick this list off, starting from ten climbing up to the number one spot!

© Chun Sin Yo

10. Kingda Ka – Six Flags Great Adventure

It’s kind of a cliché but when you have the highest and second fastest roller coaster in the world on your trip, automatically it becomes one of the most anticipated roller coasters of the trip. I’ve ridden a similar type of roller coaster with Top Thrill Dragster and did the world’s fastest roller coaster in Ferrari World Abu Dhabi, which stops from Kingda Ka being higher up this list. Though these coasters are called often one trick pony’s, just the powerful launch and the very high and steep tophat offer me enough thrill to enjoy them. I’m excited to experience Kingda Ka and see how it compares with Top Thrill Dragster and Formula Rossa.

9. Storm Chaser – Kentucky Kingdom

Kentucky Kingdom is one of the smaller parks on our trip and the home of Storm Chaser. A RMC hybrid with stats that makes him one of the smaller RMC’s out there. But stats don’t say anything, because when I have to believe some of my friends who visited Kentucky Kingdom in 2017 it’s a phenomenal coaster. Some even claimed it was the best RMC coaster they have done… Very high expectations to live up to, but knowing the persons who talked about this I’m sure Storm Chaser could be one of the better roller coasters of the trip.

8. Valravn – Cedar Point

B&M is doing a great job with selling their dive coasters lately. As a European, I’ve done a few as well but those were the more little versions. Despite their shortness compared to their American brothers, I always found those dive coasters really fun to do. Valravn is the biggest dive coaster out there and I’m really curious how much of a difference that will give against the ones I’ve done. The biggest I’ve done is pretty much half the size of Valravn… Reason enough to have Valravn in this top ten.

© Gregory Varnum

7. El Toro – Six Flags Great Adventure

As a great fan of wooden roller coasters this whole trip will be fantastic. The American theme park has on average more wooden roller coasters than their European colleagues. El Toro is since it opening named as one of the best, even the best, wooden roller coaster in the world. From watching POV videos El Toro has a great mix between ejector airtime hills and great cornering. As a woodie fancier it would be a shame to not have El Toro on this list.

6. Skyrush – Hershey Park

© Jeremy Thompson

 

Skyrush is one of the roller coasters that immediately appealed to the imagination when it was announced and constructed. It was the first hyper wing coaster Intamin did, using a new style of backbone and new developed trains where the outside rider hangs near the track. Skyrush gained a reputation of an airtime monster, and personally I love airtime machines. Skyrush also has a bad reputation when it comes to its restraints but when I rode the other hyper wing coaster Intamin has built (Flying Aces at Ferrari World Abu Dhabi) I experienced no problems at all with those restraints. I’m expecting Skyrush to be one of the top roller coasters on our trip, even with its restrains reputation.

© Thomas Wagner

5. Superman the ride – Six Flags New England

On our number five spot is another Intamin mega coaster. In Europe we know Intamin can deliver world class coaster with this type of coaster, Goliath at Walibi Holland and especially Expedition G-Force at Holiday Park are topnotch coasters. Superman opened up in 2000 and has held a top three place in the Golden Ticket Awards Poll for ‘best steel coaster’ since 2001! The only other roller coaster also achieving that is Cedar Point’s Millennium Force… Enthusiasts praise Superman for his smoothness and airtime moments. All this makes Superman the ride have a well deserved place in our top five of our top ten list.

© Ben Schumin

4. Intimidator 305 – Kings Dominion

On the fourth spot there’s another Intamin giga coaster. With a height of 93m/305ft Intimidator 305 plays in the some field as Millennium Force… but I find Intimidator 305 to have a way more interesting lay-out! Sorry CP fans. Intimidator 305 seems like a great mix-up between fast and low to the ground cornering and strong ejector airtime moments. Combined with the height and the speed, I expect on the most intense roller experiences of the trip on this one. Facts like they had to place trim brakes on the first drop because it pulled too many G’s and stories about how many persons riding experience black-outs on it also makes me very curious to ride Intimidator 305 even more.

3. Boulder Dash – Lake Compounce

Kentucky Kingdom isn’t the only small park featuring a world class coaster on our trip. The same goes for Lake Compounce. Can you imagine Lake Compounce wasn’t even on our schedule in the first drafts?! I only needed to bring up Boulder Dash to convince my friend placing it in, it didn’t take much time. Boulder Dash gains so much praise from everyone that has ridden it, being an airtime monster placed on a forested hillside as a great decor for such great woodie to shine. Just as Superman the ride, Boulder Dash can show off with some great award statistics. As well as in the Golden Ticket Awards Poll for ‘best wooden roller coaster’ as in the Mitch Hawker’s best wooden roller coaster poll it succeeded to remain in the top five. In 2004 and from 2013 until 2016 it even won the Golden Ticket Award for ‘best wooden roller coaster’! Anyone who says he favors wooden roller coaster should have ridden Boulder Dash in his life. Therefore, it’s clearly one of the coasters I’m most excited for!

 

© Martin Lewison

2. Lightning Rod – Dollywood

We are close to the number one spot and we only had one RMC so far… but did you think Storm Chaser was going to be the only one did you?! Of course not. On the number two spot I have placed Lightning Rod from Dollywood. It is a world unique roller coaster as it is the first and only wooden roller coaster to feature a launch! As a roller coaster enthusiast, unique roller coasters are always more wanted on the coaster counter to show off with, but Lightning Rod is just more than that launch. It makes great use of the terrain, raging on a hill through the woods is always a nice extra. It also has great airtime moments with a quadruple drop as piece de résistance. While Lightning Rod is the second roller coaster I’m most excited for, it could also deliver great disappointment. Not so much in the ride experience not being as good as expected but in as not being able to ride because of technical issues. Lightning Rod has had some big technical issues since its opening. It is for sure the coaster I’m most afraid for not being able to ride. Harsh when it is also one of your most anticipated roller coasters…

© Cedar Point

1. Steel Vengeance – Cedar Point

The number one spot, the roller coaster I’m most excited for… Steel Vengeance! Cedar Point is RMC’ing their former wooden roller coaster Mean Streak and if they can deliver on what they announced, they have yet another world class roller coaster in their already topnotch catalogue of roller coasters. Steel Vengeance will be a real world’s first on many things: world’s tallest hybrid coaster, world’s fastest hybrid coaster, steepest drop on a hybrid coaster, world’s longest hybrid coaster, world’s first hyper hybrid coaster, most airtime on any roller coaster… The simulation POV video Cedar Point released only speaks to the imagination. If you read this whole article you can safely assume I’m very keen on airtime roller coasters and if RMC can deliver on the promise of most airtime on any roller coaster in the world… that means Steel Vengeance could be my new all time favorite roller coaster. Cedar Point’s Steel Vengeance is the roller coaster I’m most excited to do this year. And I think that counts for anyone who is planning to visit Cedar Point this year.

Post Author: Frederik