Specific Type: Steel, Accelerator Launch
Despite the fact that the park originally opened in the 1970s,Thorpe Park wasn’t even on the radar for over two decades of operation, when it mostly served as an “educational” theme park with some small attractions. The park didn’t even get its first large attraction until 1996, when Ready Mix Concrete Ltd added the quirky X:\ No Way Out. When Tussauds group, who owned nearby Chessington World of Adventures, purchased the park in 1998, they immediately went on the offensive to get Thorpe’s name on the map. In 2000 they added the Tidal Waveshoot the chute water splash ride, followed by the coaster that made Thorpe a destination for many, the 10-inversion Colossus in 2002. In 2003, the park got its first “Beamer” with a B&M inverted coaster called Nemesis Inferno, and in 2006 they shot sky high with Stealth.
Built by Intamin, Stealth would be the last major addition by Tussauds Group before they were bought by Merlin in 2007. With an overall racing theme, the ride is somewhat oddly nestled into the Amity Cove section of the park, which is themed after a 1950s fishing village devastated by a tidal wave. But perhaps Amity was a racing town as well, with entrance of the £12 million Intamin Accelerator coaster sitting behind the very small Amity Speedway. Stealth’s biggest claim to fame? It is the fastest accelerating and tallest launch coaster in the UK, blasting from 0-80 in 1.8 seconds with a peak height of 205 feet. The ride originally accelerated to top speed in 2.3 seconds before being upgraded in 2007 to do it in 1.9. A few years later in 2010, the trains were upgraded and stripped of unnecessary weight, improving that time to 1.8 seconds.
After meandering the queue line of I-13, guests board onto classic Bel-Air styled trains, pulling down a lap bar with soft over-the-shoulder-restraints for a more comfortable and open ride in their new convertible. Once everyone’s locked in, keep an eye on the light tree ahead, as each of the five red lights progressively turn on before the final green light. When the green line goes “Three, two, one, GO, GO GO!” an explosive blast from 0-80mph in 1.8 seconds out of the station follows. Up to speed on the long straight, the track suddenly turns skyward, 90-degrees straight up. Twisting 90-degrees to the left while going vertical, the train careens over the apex of the top hat before plummeting 90-degrees straight back down. Another 90-degree rotation left in the opposing vertical direction and smooth roll out of the top hat leads into a single long bunny hop, giving an added moment of weightlessness before magnetic breaks slow the coaster down.
“Firing on all cylinders and torque to the max, this ride is a full throttle lap for thrill seekers who live life in the fast lane.”
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