February 27, 2002
Vallejo, CA -- Vertical Velocity, Six Flags Marine World's new roller coaster for the 2001 season will be angling in a new direction when it debuts again for the 2002 season. The roller coaster is being modified and the near vertical, front spiraling spike will be lowered to a diagonal 45-degree angle.
The rides intimidating back, non-twisted tower will remain a 90-degree, face-first plunge back into the station, according to Six Flags. But thrill seekers will notice an addition to the back tower as well.
This year when reaching the top, a computer-programmed brake will suspend riders for a surprising, heart-stoppping moment before releasing the train down the 150-foot tower.
"Our newly-designed speed ride will be the first of its kind in the world," said Joe Meck, Six Flags Marine World general manager. "The new track layout will deliver new sensations and more fun for Vertical Velocity riders, and add an exciting element for our guests as they enter the Park."
Six Flags did not comment on the reason for the change, but sources say local residents were upset since the ride violated zoning laws prohibiting any structures at the park from exceeding 160-feet. The front spike on Vertical Velocity stood 185 feet. Medusa, the second tallest ride in the park stands 150 feet.
In addition to the changes to the ride, park guests will also notice a new retractable floor inside the station. The new floor will make it easier and quicker for smaller guest to board the ride.
Contractors have already begun working on Vertical Velocity and Six Flags officials expect the ride to reopen in June 2002.