What words can one use to describe this coaster? Top Thrill Dragster is simply put one of the most incredible, awe-inspiring, thrilling roller coaster ever created. The sheer notion that CP would top Millennium Force by a good 110 feet in only a matter of 3 years just blew me away! I was anticipating this ride for months and then finally August 2003 arrived and it was time for my trip to CP. I was concerned with its mechanical problems that I wouldnt get a ride, but I was incredibly lucky to get 2 rides on this glorious creation! Once was during the day, the other at night (a night ride is just surreal!!)
The structure of Dragster towers over the Point and can be seen from just about everywhere. You can really gain an appreciation for just how high 420 feet is when you stand at the base of the tower and look up. My first ride came at about 7:50 pm. I entered the line at 6:50 pm - thats right, just a 1 hour wait!! (Like I said, I was sooooo lucky!) The wait in the queue goes quickly and gets the blood pumping. At the time they were launching trains every 40-50 seconds, which is very efficient work by the ride operators. Once you get into your seat and strap in, thats when you realize what is about to happen. The trains are extremely comfortable, and I truly feel this coaster benefits from the simple lapbar restraint. I think it adds something to the ride being able to move freely and FEEL the launchs incredible power. As to why its taller cousin in NJ was fitted with OTSRs, I will never know. I didnt get stapled in either time, which was a plus. The train lurches forward and stops next to the small light tower. The sounds of engines reving as you sit there is an awesome touch and totally gets the heart pounding! Then, you see it: Yellow, Yellow, Yellow, Greeaaaaaahhhhhhhhh!!!!
Thats truly how it is - the second that light goes green, youre off. The launch is truly unbelievable, you just go faster and faster and faster until you think your arms (I put mine up, I totally recommend that) will be ripped off. 0-120 mph in less than 4 seconds is just insanity and an adrenaline rush unlike any Ive EVER experienced! Having now also ridden Kingda Ka, I must also comment on how smooth the launch on TTD is, even though it is obviously very intense. Kingda Ka had a rather strange vibration to it during the launch, which to this day is not present during a launch on Dragster.
At that point, woooooossshhhh, youre now facing skyward and rocketing higher and higher. I swore I was gonna be able to high-five a bird or two!!! Then the 90 degree twist and the amazing top hat. The very top on Dragster is just thrilling nirvana!! To look down on a 310 foot coaster is just plain sick! Gotta love it! Some wonderous floater airtime from 42 stories just adds to the thrill. Then comes the whirlwind 400 foot drop that spirals 270 degrees as the coasters speed again hurtles towards 120 mph!! What a rush! On my night ride (got in line right after it reopened from a breakdown, and thus only waited 20 minutes!), I sat in the second row, and as we crested the top I looked down....thats pretty much bliss to look straight down from that high, plus as you drop all you see are supports whiz right by you!!! Across the finish line and thats it, youve now conquered one of the worlds tallest and greatest coasters! Everyone cheers and claps as you head back to the station. My advice - get the picture, it just caps off the experience.
Top Thrill Dragster is just phenominal in every aspect. The theming is fabulous and the whole Dragster area is full of excitement. There are bleachers set up and they are always full of people watching intently, even if they themselves cannot muster up the courage to hop on. You also can easily get a great up-close look at the train launching and going through the rides course, which to me is a bonus with a ride this advanced in technology. This was a small aspect, granted, of the ride, but it<