Six Flags Great America to Debut the World's First 'Hyper-Twister' Roller Coaster in '99 Park's 10th Roller Coaster Will Be its Tallest, Fastest and Longest



    GURNEE, Ill., Oct. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- In keeping with Six Flags'
 reputation for leading the amusement industry in introducing state-of-the-art
 ride technology, Six Flags Great America announces its plans to open Raging
 Bull, the world's first steel "hyper-twister" roller coaster, in the Spring of
 1999.
     Featuring a dramatic 202-foot (20-story) lift hill and a 65-degree first
 drop that plunges riders into an underground cavern at more than 70 miles per
 hour, Raging Bull will be the first roller coaster in the world to combine the
 unparalleled thrill of a steel "hyper-coaster" with the tight, intense twists
 and turns common to a wooden "cyclone-style" roller coaster.  The ride
 features six "inclined loops" -- steep, high-speed turns banked as much as 50
 degrees (or, loops lying horizontally) -- plus a combination of towering hills
 and gut-wrenching drops that comprise nearly a mile of track.
     The multi-million dollar attraction will span the entire length of the
 Park's Southwest Territory, wrapping behind the Stunt Show Arena, paralleling
 the guest parking lot and rising over the queue line for the Viper roller
 coaster.  Featuring a bold orange track and wine-colored support structure,
 Raging Bull's 202-foot-lift will dominate the Park's "skyline," dwarfing its
 neighboring roller coasters the Viper and the American Eagle, whose maximum
 heights are 100 and 127 feet, respectively.  The next tallest roller coaster
 in the Park is ShockWave, the seven-looping mega-coaster that opened in 1988
 at 170 feet.  The addition of Raging Bull brings the Park's roller coaster
 tally to 10.
     "Raging Bull is more than just another 'speed coaster' due to its unique
 design.  The combination of speed and exhilarating track configurations will
 make this a must-ride experience for roller coaster enthusiasts worldwide,"
 says Jim Wintrode, Vice President and General Manager of Six Flags Great
 America.  "Raging Bull is the most exciting addition to the Park since we
 opened Batman The Ride, the first ride of its kind in the world, in 1992.  The
 giant addition also represents the sizable commitment of Premier Parks toward
 building and expanding the entertainment product at this Park."
     Raging Bull is named after a ferocious beast that terrorized the citizens
 of the old Southwest Territory until they fled the town and built the
 beautiful courtyard and mission seen today.  The raging bull still lurks in
 the ruins of the old mission, which today serves as the loading station for
 this unpredictable, wild roller coaster.
     Upon entering the old mission, riders will be ushered into one of three
 unique, side-less 36-passenger trains.  Riders will sit high up in these open-
 air trains, with their feet barely brushing the floor.  A simple T-bar style
 restraint will extend from the floor between each rider's feet, with the bar
 resting across the rider's lap.  Vivid teal, red and yellow trains will
 feature a bovine animal print motif as well as bull's horns on the front of
 each train.
     "The Raging Bull train will be very different from traditional roller
 coaster trains because these 'side-less' trains take away a feeling of
 protection around the passengers," comments Wintrode.  "The sense of
 vulnerability will make this ride even more thrilling for our Guests."
     When the train leaves the station, it will begin its 76-second ascent up
 the 202-foot lift hill.  From there, it will plunge 208 feet at 73 miles per
 hour down a nearly straight drop into an underground cavern.  The train will
 roar out of this tunnel and soar, practically sideways, through an inclined
 loop 159 feet off the ground.  This will be followed by more soaring hills,
 steep drops and wildly banked turns before returning to the station.  This
 non-looping, wild ride on 5,057 feet of track will last more than 2-1/2
 minutes.
     Raging Bull is being designed and manufactured by Bolliger and Mabillard,
 the acclaimed Swiss roller coaster design firm that brought Iron Wolf to Six
 Flags Great America in 1990 and introduced the inverted outside-looping roller
 coaster to the world at Six Flags Great America with the opening of Batman The
 Ride in 1992.
     In recent years, the pursuit of greater thrills and higher adrenaline
 rushes has resulted in the construction of roller coasters that deliver
 increasing speed.  Often called "speed coasters" or "hyper coasters," these
 rides traditionally incorporate towering lifts and super-steep drops to
 achieve speeds in excess of 70 miles per hour.  Typically, speed coasters
 feature long straight-aways of track and a series of small hills that gives
 riders exhilarating "air time."  Raging Bull's design is unique even among
 speed coasters, due to the twists, switchbacks and "inclined loops"
 incorporated in a way that sustains speed and delivers a breathless ride.
     Construction has already begun on this powerhouse roller coaster and will
 continue throughout the winter months.  The ride is expected to open to the
 public in the Spring of 1999.
     Six Flags Great America is owned by Premier Parks Inc., (NYSE:   PKS) the
 world's largest regional theme park company with 31 parks, including parks
 serving nine of the ten largest metropolitan areas in the United States and
 six locations in Europe.  The company annually hosts nearly 40 million guests.
 A publicly held corporation with corporate offices in New York City and
 Oklahoma City, Premier trades on the NYSE under the symbol PKS.
 
                               RAGING BULL FACTS
 
     WHAT:   Steel "hyper-twister" roller coaster, featuring speeds exceeding
             70 m.p.h., steep drops and high-banked turns
 
     WHEN:   Debuts Spring 1999
 
     WHERE:  Ride traverses the entire length of the Southwest Territory at Six
             Flags Great America, Gurnee, Illinois -- paralleling the guest
             parking lot and reaching from the Viper queue line to the Stunt
             Show Arena.
 
     DESIGNED AND FABRICATED BY:  Bolliger and Mabillard
                                  Monthey, Switzerland
 
     COLORS: Wine-colored support structures with orange track; bright teal,
             red and yellow trains feature a bovine print motif and bull's
             horns.
 
     TRACK LENGTH:   5,057 Feet
 
     NO. OF TRAINS:  3 trains
 
     NO. OF CARS/PASSENGERS: 9 Cars and 36 riders per train
 
     NO. OF PASSENGERS/HOUR: 1,560
 
     HEIGHT OF FIRST LIFT:   202 Feet
 
     LENGTH OF FIRST DROP:   208 Feet (into an underground tunnel) at 65
                             degrees
 
     MAXIMUM SPEED:     73 m.p.h.
 
     LENGTH OF RIDE:    Estimated, 2-1/2 minutes
 
     SPECIAL FEATURES:  Riders are secured in unique, open-sided cars by a
                        simple lap bar restraint
 
                        This high-speed roller coaster features 6 steep-banked
                        turns and "inclined loops."  The highest points on the
                        ride are 202 feet (first lift), 159 feet (first
                        inclined loops) and 144 feet (second hill) and 128 feet
                        (third hill).
 
 

SOURCE Six Flags Great America

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