Specific Type: Hyper Coaster
In May of 1999, Six Flags Great America pulled the wraps off of the tallest, fastest, longest coaster to debut on the Gurnee, Illinois park's soil since Great America first opened gates to visitors twenty-three years before. Rising up 202 feet, dropping nearly twenty-one stories and hitting seventy-three miles per hour during the run along a 5,057-foot course, Raging Bull settled into the Illinois park'sSouthwest Territory as one of the most relentless rides around. Raging Bull comes from Bolliger and Mabillard as that company's second hyper-coaster, following Busch Gardens Williamsburg's Apollo's Chariot and B&M's third installation for Six Flags Great America, proceeding 1990's Iron Wolf and 1992's Batman: the Ride. The coaster is also the first hyper ride to twist through a cyclonic 'twister' layout, billed as the world's first hyper-twister. But the rarities don't end there. Upon boarding one of the coaster's four-abreast wide, nine-row-long trains, riders slide into 'raised' seats so that feet hang elevated above the train's floor throughout the ride, a simple T-shaped lap restraint holding each rider in place and sideless cars to give passengers full advantage of the hyper-coaster heights and speed.
The ride on Raging Bull begins from the station with a left-hand 180-degree banked turn leading to the lift hill. The train makes contact with the chain and begins the coaster's initial climb to the sky. Once the track starts leveling out and riders get to look over 200 feet to the ground below, the train heads down a small dip and makes for the sixty-five-degree 208-foot drop just ahead. The drop begins and passengers plunge down to the ground and enter a subterranean cavern before bottoming out. Exiting the tunnel, the orange track leads skyward again, this time up a steep climb to a seventeen-story banked turnaround. The Bull rages back down, crosses over the post-drop tunnel and climbs over a camelback hill, then ascends a fourth hill leading into a steep banked turn. The coaster dives down over the lift hill and then wraps around a second turnaround fan curve. The train next climbs up and enters a mid-course block brake section paralleling the lift. Off of the brakes, the ride next completes a camelback hump and banks through a curve encircling both the end of the first drop and start of the first camelback. A graceful figure-eight maneuver finally curves around and feeds into the brake run.
Starting the 2008 season, Raging Bull was re-painted its orange track and purple supports over again to make it look brilliant once again. In 2009, it received a new wooden logo at the entrance replacing its original logo which featured a bull with a nose ring appearing to charge at you.
Raging Bull is a hyper-coaster as untamable as they come.
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