Vekoma SLC's with a Helix before the brake run
I was just reading on Screamscape that Ratanga Junction in Cape Town South Africa was closing. I was curious what coasters they had as I had never heard of the park before. I bounced on over to RCDB and saw that they have a Vekoma SLC with a wide helix before going into the brakes.
I can honestly say I did not know Vekoma produced a SLC with a helix.
Anybody know the history of how they came to be?
With SFA being my home park, I thought for a while there SFA was the "Vekoma Capital of the World", with Mind Eraser, Two Face, and then Batwing.
Say what you will about Mind Eraser or SLC's in general, but Mind Eraser holds a special place in my heart. My first coaster (and first looping coaster for that matter) since I was eight when my twenty-eight year old father dragged me on Grizzly at KD. Great_Ump didn't ride another coaster for seven more years. Summer of 1995, still have the black and white glossy photo somewhere.
To think Premier Parks' addition of Mind Eraser was in 1995, the same year that Warner Bros Movie Studio's Arkham Asylum opened, and possibly could have gone to what was then Adventure World.
Premier Parks was spending money prior to 1995. In 1993, Python's addition, one half of Lightning Loops at Great Adventure, Shipwreck Falls, as well as a collection of flats and kiddie rides. In 1994, the water park received two new slides.
The year of 1995 was a huge year for the park. The park received a major expansion (Coyote Creek) to the west of the main path and backs up against what is now Hurricane Harbor. Iron Eagle, Renegade Rapids, Teacups, and Flying Carousel "swings" were also added.
There was nothing but land to build on. They hadn't built the overflow lots yet, at least I don't believe they had, and that helix could've been really good (or really bad) depending on the year. That helix on my first coaster in a long time would've been awesome. In addition to the helix at the end, there are other noticeable changes with wider turns.
Mind Eraser was such a hit that I've heard through the grapevine they saw a 25% increase in annual attendance. Multiple sources.
'96 saw Tower of Doom added, '97 a massive water park expansion and Typhoon Sea Coaster, and '98 we got Roar.
I'm just enjoying something that I learned and thinking what could've been, the good, the bad, and the ugly...
Figured I'd share. I'm certainly no expert on this hobby, and see what others know or may not know about this SLC Model with the helix at the end. There's been five of them operating since the late 90's.
* This post was modified at 5/15/14 1:25:21 AM *
I don't recall the stats off the top of my head, but I think it only extended it so many meters beyond what the standard model employs.
It'd be nice to experience one since once you've ridden a SLC, they tend to be all the same (minus or plus on the roughness scale) in terms of what you're expecting. A helix would definitely throw my mind for a loop as I'm bracing to hit that rough brake run.