May 30, 2008
Orlando, FL -- SeaWorld Orlando announced plans for their next generation of thrills with Manta. This new flying roller coaster, described as a "mega attraction" will seamlessly transition guests from the awe of encountering rays in underwater flight, into the sensation of actually being one.
The Manta roller coaster will debut summer 2009.
According to SeaWorld, Manta will inspire riders with amazing underwater animal habitats, then soar them face-down, in a horizontal position, aboard a manta-inspired flying roller coaster.
SeaWorld plans to create a new level of immersion into the animal world with Manta. The park wants to envelop riders in a sensation of oneness with the ocean's most powerful and graceful creature as they soar, dive and plummet through the air and at times within inches of the sea.
Manta will be constructed just inside the entrance of SeaWorld and above a seawater-filled lagoon that will double as a habitat for these creatures.
The 7-acre, 140-ft tall attraction will be located inside the main entrance to SeaWorld, and become an icon in the park with its unique design. Manta will be built above a seawater-filled lagoon that will double as an animal habitat for the attraction.
Towering over SeaWorld's 200-acres, the manta-themed coaster − cloaked in hues of dark purple, ultramarine blue, and cobalt − will lure guests into the world of the mysterious ray, according to Seaworld.
The journey begins when guests enter a mythical village filled with artisan-created engravings and artwork that celebrate ray legend and lore. Described as "no ordinary queue line", the attraction begins with the first step inside.
Anticipation builds as guests wind through caverns adorned with ray-inspired art in marble, jewels, and mosaics, all hand-created and left behind by artists who were moved to pay tribute to the beauty, grace and intrigue of these animals.
Floor-to-ceiling windows peering into the lagoon will offer guests a face-to-fin encounter will 300 rays, thousands of fish and mysterious creatures native to the oceans of the world.
The animal habitat will feature shark rays, spotted eagles rays, leopard rays, cownose rays, and oscillate river rays float past guests with fluidity and grace in a view new to SeaWorld. Enhancing the feeling of awe, elaborate lighting, sound and rushing waterfalls further submerge guests into this underwater universe.
In some ways Manta will serve as two attractions at SeaWorld Orlando.
Guests who opt to ride Manta will board a giant ray-themed train and fly face down, in a horizontal position. The roller coaster's trains will feature a wingspan of 12-feet and will soar over sea and sky in a graceful manner.
According to SeaWorld, Manta will swoop and dive at speeds of nearly 60 mph through four inversions on 3,359 feet of track. The ride will be designed to make riders feel as if they are a ray, taking flight effortlessly from sea to sky and at times so close that Manta's wings will actually skim the water in the lagoon below.
"This ride is uniquely SeaWorld," said Dan Brown, Vice President and General Manager of SeaWorld Orlando. "SeaWorld is famous for connecting guests with the sea and its amazing creatures, and Manta does this in a way that has never been done before, creating a true sense of oneness between human and animal.
"The sensation of Manta also will be like none other in the world − guests will be inspired by the grace and power of live rays, then feel as if they, themselves, are gliding through air and water," said Joseph Couceiro, Chief Marketing Officer for SeaWorld's parent company, Busch Entertainment Corporation. "No one but SeaWorld can unite thrills and ocean animals into such a unique experience."
Manta is being custom designed for SeaWorld by renowned Swiss coaster designers Bolliger & Mabillard.
For more information about SeaWorld Orlando, visit www.seaworld.com.
Artwork courtesy of SeaWorld Orlando. All rights reserved.
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