Cedar Point, the self-proclaimed Roller Coaster Capital of the World, has been working on a new coaster for 2007. The park has a track record of erecting jaw-dropping, record breakers. It's been home to the speed and height world record holders four times. In 1989 with Magnum XL-200, in 1991 with Mean Streak, in 2000 with Millennium Force, and again in 2003 with Top Thrill Dragster, the park has boasted the king of steel or wooden coasters. It's safe to say that Cedar Point has been pushing the envelope in coaster design for years.
Throngs of coaster enthusiasts have been salivating as construction photos started showing up on the Internet. Cedar Point has kept all of the details under wraps until today. This morning Cedar Point released the details of its 17th coaster. Maverick will be a steel launch coaster with speeds of 70 mph, three inversions (loops), and a drop at a staggering 95 degrees.
Not a Record Breaker
I will go ahead and state the obvious. Maverick will not be a record breaker. Earlier this year, Cedar Point's blog On Point hinted that the park may not build another height monster for its next coaster. In my opinion, this is a smart move. Is going 500 feet into the air really that much more thrilling than going up 400 feet as Top Thrill Dragster already does? I'm sure Cedar Point will return to the coaster arms race at a later date as that seems to be the park's bread and butter. For now though, it is nice to see them switching it up.
A Neo Mine Train Coaster
Maverick will be located in the Frontier section next to Mean Streak. From looking at the ride animation, the layout will be interesting with lots of theming and faux rock terrain. Via linear synchronous motors riders will be launched up an incline and immediately sent down a 100 foot drop. 100 foot drops are a dime a dozen these days, but this one is at 95 degrees. I still doubt seasoned veterans like me will be blown away by the drop, but at least they're trying something different. I'm more interested in the 4,450 foot long course that will twist and turn through the rocky terrain while staying low to the ground. Maverick will also feature eight airtime hills and three inversions. One of the inversions will be a one-of-a-kind twisted horseshoe roll. At one point the train will slow to only 5 mph before riders will be launched to 70 mph through a 400-foot tunnel. That sounds cool, but with two launch sections, I have to think that this coaster will have some down time.
There aren’t many coasters being built these days that look exactly like Maverick. This could be another chance for Cedar Point to start a trend like they did with Magnum XL-200 and hyper coasters. It appears Maverick will offer theming similar to a mine train coaster. It will be close to the ground and is more of a family attraction like mine train coasters. Built by Intamin, it may have similar trains, track, and the same overall feel of Storm Runner at Hershey. It will also boast an inversion that may be comparable to Storm Runner’s unique and disorienting flying snake dive. Lastly, it will use the same propulsion system that the Rock ‘N’ Roller Coaster at MGM Studios and Superman The Escape at Magic Mountain use.
While Maverick won't blast riders into the stratosphere it may go down as one of the park's most complete coasters. Other than Magnum XL-200, I wasn't blown away by the park's selection of coasters. Several were sub par, others were okay, and a few were good, but didn't have the complete package. If Cedar Point can actually pull off all of the purported elements of Maverick they could have a coaster loved by hard core coaster enthusiasts, families, and even those not under its spell. I’m in that last group if you couldn’t tell.