SheiKra, Busch Gardens Africa newest roller coaster open in May 2005, and was America’s first dive machine style roller coaster. Now just two years after it’s opening, Busch Gardens Africa has decided to make a major modification, which will enhance SheiKra’s ride experience.
This new modification will be the installation of new floorless trains, and they will replace SheiKra’s current trains, which have a standard floor. SheiKra’s new cars will continue to hold eight riders across and each train will still be three rows deep.
SheiKra’s track will remain unchanged, but the station will have to have a retractable floor and handrails installed to accommodate for these new floorless trains. The retractable floor will rise and fill the gaps across the loading platform so riders will be able to board the trains.
These new floorless trains will let passengers enjoy SheiKra while having nothing but open air around them and a shoulder harness holding them in. SheiKra will close beginning Memorial Day, May 28, so the installation process for the new floorless trains can begin. This dive machine, created by Bolliger & Mabillard, will remain closed for approximately three weeks so these modifications can be made. SheiKra is planned to reopen with its new trains on June 16.
Busch Gardens Africa’s northern counterpart, Busch Gardens Europe, will be opening the Griffon this spring. The Griffon will be a dive machine very similar to SheiKra, and the Griffon will also have floorless trains. SheiKra features a 200-foot vertical drop at a 90-degree angle, and now with the addition of these floorless trains, Busch Gardens Africa hopes to make this highly rated roller coaster even better than it already is.