by Caine Donis
After many delays, and having media day pushed back, June 18, 2014 finally came, and the time to ride the much anticipated Goliath was now. Andy and I were ready conquer Six Flags' newest coaster creation, Goliath. As with most media days, our day started in the dark at 3:45 a.m. in the Great America parking lot, waiting to check in. As we walked into the dark and empty park Andy was like a little kid knowing that he got a new bike for Christmas. A line had already started, and dispatch after dispatch we waited. Because Goliath's second train was set to be certified later that day, the media day only had one train running during the whole day which made for long stretches of time for rabidly waiting riders. As the dark turned slowly turned into light, the time was soon upon us to board the coaster that we've discussing for almost a year.
As for the ride itself, Goliath definitely has many experiences that cannot be found elsewhere. The first drop is absolutely amazing. The force is so great, I had my arms up and as we dropped they went down. I tried to bring them back up but there was too much force to do so. The rest is a blur for the first ride, but with this ride you'll see something new every time you ride. The elements that RMC puts into the ride are just pure enjoyment. Overall is doesn't make my top ten list, but that is only because I don't have a top ten list. Like with X-Flight, I'll say this, it's fun. Fun is what a ride is supposed to be about. If we go and nitpick at every little nuance such as "it's too short, it not wood, it's not this or that" you lose out on the fun. I'm not saying you have to love it, but I think you should give it a chance and ride it before making an opinion on it.
After our first ride we set out into the park to take a break. First we decided to take some pictures of Trojan Bugs Bunny who was entertaining the crowds of roller coaster enthusiasts and media. We next went to search for food. The spread laid out was a bit underwhelming featuring the standard muffins, donuts, and Coca-Cola products. Determined to press on, we decided to take photos of the completed Goliath before the official ribbon cutting to Goliath. Before the ceremony the two of us were able to sneak on a second ride on Goliath. Next up was the official opening ceremony for Goliath. As the park president Hank Salemi started to talk about the wonders of Goliath, the skies became angry and dark ominous clouds began to appear. Despite this, a horde of gladiators rushed to Salemi's side to usher in the opening of the new ride. After a few words, the train of gladiators went out on their maiden voyage, and Goliath was officially open.
As hinted at, the media day itself did have a number of different setbacks including maintenance issues and weather. First the weather was not cooperative at all for the opening of Goliath. After the ribbon cutting ceremony, the rain then came and was so furious that Andy and I took cover under the nearby covered bridge. In addition, the ride experienced some technical difficulties. I'm not going to say much about the down time caused by media trying to get shots for news coverage because we all know that will happen with media days. In addition a wheel ended up breaking, and maintenance quickly got it fixed. Luckily, nobody was serious injured when that happened either. Even though these technical issues happened, as time passed into the late morning the ride reopened, and we got a few more rides in. Especially exciting, we were able to get three rides in a row plus our reverse POV. I ended up with a total of 8 rides on Six Flags' newest creation for the day.
I do want to thank Six Flags Great America for having Andy and myself there representing COASTER-net.com. They have truly changed not only the skyline of a great America, but the way people look at this park from now on.