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 Review of Top Thrill Dragster @ Cedar Point
6 Rating Posted by: Paradox on 8/16/2003 9:56:00 AM
I have been obsessed with this ride ever since footers were poured last year, and after riding it I can state without reservation that this is by far the best thrill ride ever built.

Everything about Dragster is perfect. The theming is probably the best in the world, since even the spectators get caught up in the action. The ride still breaks down frequently, but this will likely become less of a problem next year....and once rocket-coaster technology is perfected this thing will probably be as reliable as a chain lifted ride. My rating will not deduct points for the closings, but rather reflect the ride when it operates at its best. The line moves surprisingly fast for the worlds tallest coaster, and credit can be given to Cedar Points multi-train operaton that some other parks ( *cough* SFNE *cough*) need to take a hint from. You are enclosed as you wait by the track, and no matter how many times the cars blast up and over the tower, your eyes stay transfixed on it counting down the laps until it is your turn.

After about an hour and ten minutes it was time and as you pull forward the combination of engines revving and repeated slow forward lurches keep you on edge thinking each time you inch forward is THE time. When THE time comes, you will know. In an instant, your head is pinned back, and after about a second and a half into the launch things really get interesting. The ride suddenly charges twice as hard and the acceleration isnt just strong, it is brutal. It literally feels like being shot from a cannon, almost as if the back of the train was rear-ended bu a runaway train. Nerves fire and vision blurs in the most awe imspiring blast of pure acceleration this side of a carrier launched jet. The sound of the track and the wind suddenly dies down to an eerie calm as you leave the launch strip and hurtle skyward to the top of the tower. The absolute peak is quiet...almost too quiet, but a perfect complement to the sensory rush of five seconds earlier. You look forward and down at Millennium Force, in a view that you will probably never forget, and then experience two seconds or so of freefall, followed by the supports of the tower blurring by into the 200 foot pullout to the finish line. After a very smooth deceleration, the bad part comes: getting off.

Overall this ride exceeded my expectations on the launch, the smoothness, and when it was running right it was a surprisingly short wait. I can see why it wasnt given more elements like Xcelerator, since capacity would be decreased. Despite my love of some of the other coasters, I would ride this once over any of them three times.

That said though, Dragster is not in my opinion the best coaster in the world. To me, the lift hill( with the anticipation that follows) is an important part of any riding experience, and the lack of other elements make it hard to place atop the entire list of coasters out there. I think coasters fall into one category, and Dragster another( and hopefully growing) one. But....to put it into perspective, coasters are a genre of thrill rides, Dragster is a thrill ride as well, and it just might be the greatest thrill ride of all. To those who havent ridden it, dont let the wait or closures discourage you. Just get into line and STAY there. You will be glad you did!

Review Comments

tacoking on 8/25/2003 9:56:49 PM said:
Great Review! I love it!
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