Kings Island on Friday gave its 100 millionth ride on the Racer roller coaster, which opened with the 364-acre amusement and waterpark in 1972.
The rider was Angela Marshall of Chattanooga, TN, who received a Racer-themed airbrush t-shirt, a 2015 VIP tour for eight guests and a large sign proclaiming her as the twin-track coaster’s 100 millionth rider.
When the Racer debuted, it broke records as the world’s biggest, longest and fastest roller coaster. At speeds approaching 60 mph, it was the fastest, too. The Racer is credited for sparking the roller coaster-building boom in the early 1970’s, launching the second golden age of the roller coaster. Its record year for most rides given was 1976, when a single-season park record 3,681,338 rides were given.
In addition to being considered an important part of the roller coaster renaissance of the 1970’s, the Racer was the sight of several world-record riding attempts and is notable for its appearance in the “Cincinnati Kids” episode of The Brady Bunch, filmed at Kings Island in 1973.
The Racer was also the first roller coaster built structurally on the ground with prefabricated sections lifted into position and bolted.
The Racer is the first attraction in Kings Island’s 42-year history to give 100 million rides. The next closest attraction is the K.I. & Miami Valley Railroad at 51 million.