|Holiday World & Splashin' Safari|
|Location||Holiday World & Splashin' Safari|
|Soft opening date||April 24, 2015|
|Opening date||April 25, 2015|
|Type||Steel – Wing Coaster – Launched|
|Manufacturer||Bolliger & Mabillard|
|Height||140 ft (43 m)|
|Length||3,035 ft (925 m)|
|Speed||60 mph (97 km/h)|
|Capacity||1,140 riders per hour|
|Acceleration||0 to 60 mph (0 to 97 km/h) in 3.5 seconds|
|Height restriction||52–78 in (132–198 cm)|
|Trains||2 trains with 5 cars. Riders are arranged 4 across in a single row for a total of 20 riders per train.|
| Thunderbird at RCDB |
Pictures of Thunderbird at RCDB
Thunderbird is a steel roller coaster in the Thanksgiving section of Holiday World & Splashin' Safari amusement park in Santa Claus, Indiana. Designed by Bolliger & Mabillard, the ride opened in 2015 as the eighth Wing Coaster in the world and the fourth in the United States.
Thunderbird is B&M's first launched coaster in sixteen years and their first launch coaster built in-house (The Incredible Hulk Coaster at Universal's Islands of Adventure uses a launch system supplied by the park). The Wing Coaster reaches a speed of 60 miles per hour (97 km/h) in 3.5 seconds and features the tallest vertical loop on a Wing Coaster. Thunderbird had its first test run on March 8, 2015 and opened to the public on April 25, 2015.
On July 24, 2014, Holiday World announced that they would be opening Thunderbird for the 2015 season. It would be the park's first major steel coaster, as well as the first launched wing coaster in the United States. Thunderbird would also be the first roller coaster at the park to go upside down.The track and supports began arriving at the park the following week. By October, the first two inversions were topped off. The new trains were shown off during IAAPA 2014. Then, the track layout was completed on December 2, 2014.
Thunderbird officially opened on April 25, 2015. Prairie Farms Dairy released an ice cream flavor called "Thunderbird" to advertise the new ride. This flavor was a combination of vanilla ice cream with a touch of caramel and more spicy, roasted pecans.
After loading in the station, the train moves forward and stops. Mist blows in front of the train and thunder sounds as the train launches to 60 miles per hour (97 km/h) in 3.5 seconds by linear synchronous motors. The train immediately goes into a 140 feet (43 m) Immelmann loop. After the first element, the train then goes down its first drop into a 125 feet (38 m) vertical loop, the tallest vertical loop on a Wing Coaster, surpassing Wild Eagle at Dollywood. After the vertical loop, the train crosses over the valley between The Voyage's second and third hills, goes through an overbanked turn, and then an overbanked elevated spiral in the mirrored direction. The train then goes through a zero-g-roll parallel to The Voyage. After several curves next to The Voyage's triple-down drop and spaghetti bowl, the train dips down into a barn (which is the keyhole) where it then curves left back into the barn by doing an inline twist, crossing over The Voyage's underground tunnels. Once the inline twist ends the train enters the brake run. From the brake run, the track makes a right turn to another set of brakes before entering the station. One cycle of the ride lasts about 1 minute and 18 seconds.
Thunderbird is located in the Thanksgiving theme section of the park along with The Voyage and it runs parallel and crosses over The Voyage twice: after the vertical loop and during the inline twist.
PGAV Destinations is the theming designer for Thunderbird. The designers took the Thunderbird name and coaster design and created a visual theme of the legendary bird’s powerful flight through farms and forests of southern Indiana.
Thunderbird is a Wing Coaster model manufactured by Swiss roller coaster firm Bolliger & Mabillard. It is Holiday World & Splashin' Safaris first major steel roller coaster. Thunderbird is the eighth Wing Coaster to be built and the fourth in the United States, the others being X-Flight at Six Flags Great America, Wild Eagle at Dollywood and GateKeeper at Cedar Point.Thunderbird is the first Bolliger & Mabillard coaster to utilize an LSM launch. An earlier launched coaster, The Incredible Hulk roller coaster at Islands of Adventure, Universal Orlando, utilizes a pinch-wheel drive system that was designed exclusively for Universal Studios by Universal Creative.
Thunderbird operates with two open-air steel and fiberglass trains, each with five cars of four seats each, with two on each side of the track. Each train holds 20 riders and the ride has a capacity of about 1,140 riders per hour. Because the seats are on the side of the track, a cantilevered steel arm is used to support the wings.
Thunderbird's steel track is 3,035 feet (925 m) long and the tallest part of the ride is the first inversion, an Immelmann loop at 140 feet (43 m).
Every launch requires 2.5 megawatts of power, with the energy being stored in electric generators with two massive 24,000-pound flywheel assemblies.The launch system mechanics are located in a separate building known as Will Power. The name came from the park's former president Will Koch, who died in 2010.
Thunderbird was ranked in the Amusement Today's Golden Ticket Awards for best new ride of 2015 with 9.5% of the vote, to come in fifth place.
|Golden Ticket Awards: Best New Ride for 2015|
An inverted roller coaster is a roller coaster in which the train runs under the track with the seats directly attached to the wheel carriage. This latter attribute is what sets it apart from the older suspended coaster, which runs under the track, but swings via a pivoting bar attached to the wheel carriage. The coaster type's inverted orientation, where the passengers' legs are exposed, distinguishes it from a traditional roller coaster, where only the passengers' upper body parts, including the arms, are exposed.
Bolliger & Mabillard, officially Bolliger & Mabillard Consulting Engineers, Inc. and often abbreviated B&M, is a roller coaster design consultancy based in Monthey, Switzerland. The company was founded in 1988 by Walter Bolliger and Claude Mabillard, both of whom had worked for Giovanola.
Holiday World & Splashin' Safari is a combination theme park and water park located near Interstate 64 and U.S. 231 in Santa Claus, Indiana, United States. The theme park is divided into four sections that celebrate Christmas, Halloween, Thanksgiving and the Fourth of July with rides, live entertainment, games, and attractions.
Nemesis is an inverted roller coaster located at the Alton Towers theme park in England. It opened to the public on March 19, 1994. The ride was manufactured by Bolliger & Mabillard and designed by Werner Stengel, in collaboration with attraction developer John Wardley. It is located in the Forbidden Valley area of the park, adjacent to Galactica and The Blade attractions.
Kumba is a steel roller coaster located at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay in Tampa, Florida. Manufactured by Bolliger & Mabillard, the ride opened in 1993. It stands 143 feet (44 m) tall and has a top speed of 60 miles per hour (97 km/h). Kumba features a total of seven inversions across the 3-minute ride.
The Incredible Hulk Coaster is a launched roller coaster located at Universal's Islands of Adventure within the Universal Orlando Resort. Designed by Werner Stengel and manufactured by Bolliger & Mabillard (B&M), the roller coaster is themed after Marvel's Hulk and opened to the public on May 28, 1999. It is the first B&M coaster themed to a Marvel Comics superhero character and the first to feature a launch design, a system that was primarily implemented by Universal Creative and MTS Systems Corporation.
Montu is an inverted roller coaster at Busch Gardens Tampa in Tampa, Florida. Designed by Swiss manufacturer Bolliger & Mabillard, it is the park's second roller coaster designed by that company following the success of Kumba, which opened 3 years prior. When the ride opened on May 16, 1996, it was the world's tallest and fastest inverted roller coaster, a title it has since conceded to Alpengeist at sister park Busch Gardens Williamsburg. The ride stands 150 feet (46 m) tall and reaches speeds of 60 miles per hour (97 km/h).
Tatsu is a flying roller coaster designed by Bolliger & Mabillard at the Six Flags Magic Mountain amusement park located in Valencia, California, United States. Manufactured by Bolliger & Mabillard, it opened as the tallest, fastest, and longest flying coaster in the world on May 13, 2006. It became the park's seventeenth coaster, featuring a height of 170 feet (52 m), a track length of 3,602 feet (1,098 m), and a maximum speed of 62 mph (100 km/h). Tatsu also features the world's tallest pretzel loop and the only zero-gravity roll inversion on a flying coaster model. Nearly a decade later, The Flying Dinosaur opened at Universal Studios Japan in 2016, breaking Tatsu's length record and matching its speed. In its debut season, Tatsu was ranked 40th among steel coasters in the annual Golden Ticket Awards from Amusement Today, peaking with a rank of 28 in 2012.
Superman: Ultimate Flight is the name of three flying roller coasters currently operating at three Six Flags amusement parks in the United States, those being Six Flags Over Georgia, Six Flags Great Adventure and Six Flags Great America. Each of these steel coasters were designed and built by Swiss manufacturer Bolliger & Mabillard and opened in 2002 and 2003. Since 2003, Six Flags has installed Superman: Ultimate Flight in three of their parks. Themed to the popular comic book character, Superman: Ultimate Flight simulates flying by positioning its passengers parallel to the track, supported by harnesses and facing the ground through most of the ride. In the station, riders board the train sitting down. After the train is locked and checked, the trains are raised into the flying position. After the ride, the seats are lowered back into the sitting position for the next round of riders.
T3 (stylized as T3; pronounced "T-three", "T-cubed", or "Terror to the third power") is an inverted roller coaster at Kentucky Kingdom in Louisville, Kentucky. Previously named T2, the Suspended Looping Coaster model manufactured by Vekoma opened on April 8, 1995. The amusement park closed in 2009 due to financial difficulties, but later reopened under new ownership in 2014. The roller coaster was refurbished and renamed T3, which reopened to the public on July 3, 2015.
The Dive Coaster is a steel roller coaster model developed and engineered by Bolliger & Mabillard. The design features one or more near-vertical drops that are approximately 90 degrees, which provide a moment of free-falling for passengers. The experience is enhanced by unique trains that seat up to ten riders per row, spanning only two or three rows total. Unlike traditional train design, this distinguishing aspect gives all passengers virtually the same experience throughout the course of the ride. Another defining characteristic of Dive Coasters is the holding brake at the top of the lift hill that holds the train momentarily right as it enters the first drop, suspending some passengers with a view looking straight down and releasing suddenly moments later.
Roller coaster elements are the individual parts of roller coaster design and operation, such as a track, hill, loop, or turn. Variations in normal track movement that add thrill or excitement to the ride are often called "thrill elements".
Wing Coaster is engineering firm Bolliger & Mabillard’s designation for its winged roller coaster designs. Winged roller coasters are a type of steel roller coaster where pairs of riders sit on either side of a roller coaster track in which nothing is above or below the riders. B&M began development on the first Wing Coaster between 2007 and 2008 leading to the opening of Raptor at Gardaland on 1 April 2011. There are currently sixteen B&M-designed Wing Coasters either under construction or operating worldwide as of December 2020.
SheiKra is a steel Dive Coaster roller coaster at the Busch Gardens Tampa Bay amusement park in Tampa, Florida, United States. The roller coaster was proposed by Mark Rose, vice-president of design and engineering for the park, and designed by Bolliger & Mabillard. The ride was planned to be 160 feet (49 m) high, but the park's executives rejected this and the height was changed to 200 feet (61 m). SheiKra reaches a maximum speed of 70 miles per hour (110 km/h) and has a total track length of 3,188 feet (972 m). It first opened on May 21, 2005, and was converted to a floorless roller coaster on June 16, 2007, following the opening of its sister Dive Coaster Griffon at Busch Gardens Williamsburg that year.
Wild Eagle is a steel Wing Coaster built by Bolliger & Mabillard at the Dollywood amusement park in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. It is the first of its kind in the United States and opened to the media on March 23, 2012 before opening to the public on March 24, 2012. The roller coaster reaches a height of 210 feet (64 m) and reaches speeds of 61 miles per hour (98 km/h). In September 2012, the ride was voted as the best new ride of 2012 in Amusement Today's Golden Ticket Awards.
OzIris is a steel inverted roller coaster designed by Bolliger & Mabillard operating at Parc Astérix in France since 7 April 2012. It is only one of two Bolliger & Mabillard inverted coasters in France, the other being The Monster at Walygator Parc. It is named after the Character Iris from the French comic Asterix.
Sky Scrapper is a flying roller coaster at World Joyland in Wujin, Changzhou, Jiangsu, China. Sky Scrapper was one of World Joyland's opening day attractions, officially opening on April 30, 2011. The 2,805.1-foot-long (855.0 m) ride stands 131.3 feet (40.0 m) tall, and features a top speed of 54.7 mph (88.0 km/h). Designed by Swiss firm Bolliger & Mabillard, Sky Scrapper restrains riders in the prone position and features five inversions.
Banshee is an inverted roller coaster located at Kings Island amusement park in Mason, Ohio. Designed and built by Bolliger & Mabillard, it was the biggest investment in park history at the time, costing $24 million to construct. With 4,124 feet (1,257 m) of track, Banshee opened to the public on April 18, 2014, as the longest inverted roller coaster in the world. The ride also became the third fastest inverted coaster at 68 miles per hour (109 km/h), matched by Steel Venom at Valleyfair in Shakopee, Minnesota. It was also well-received, ranking every year in the top 50 of Amusement Today's Golden Ticket Awards since its opening.
Nitro is a steel Floorless Coaster at Imagicaa amusement park in Khopoli, Maharashtra, India. Manufactured by Bolliger & Mabillard, the roller coaster reaches a maximum height of 132 feet (40 m) and a maximum speed of 65.2 miles per hour (104.9 km/h). The coaster also features five inversions. Nitro opened to the public in October 2013.
The Flying Dinosaur is a steel flying roller coaster at Universal Studios Japan. Designed by Swiss firm Bolliger & Mabillard, Flying Dinosaur restrains riders in the prone position. This attraction opened on March 18, 2016, and is currently the world's second longest flying roller coaster, as the track length has been surpassed by F.L.Y. in Phantasialand, which opened in September 17, 2020.
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