This record-breaking roller coaster soars over its competition

Credit: Cedar Point

There is nothing like celebrating the summer by visiting a theme park and partaking in the latest and greatest of thrill rides. This year, Ohio’s Cedar Point is unveiling its own exciting new masterpiece: a brand new wing roller coaster called The Gatekeeper, which is set to break a few world records when it is unveiled.

When it comes to roller coasters, bigger is always considered better. The Gatekeeper boasts some record-breaking statistics on both fronts. Not only does it include the world’s tallest upside-down drop (165 feet) and the most conversions of any existing roller coaster in the world, but it is also the longest of the world’s five “wing coasters.” The initial drop itself is so high that it generates enough kinetic energy to keep the coaster’s cars traveling along 4,164 feet of track for a ride that lasts 2 minutes and 40 seconds.

At the end of that first long drop, riders experience about four times the force of gravity (4G’s), while zooming along at 67 mph before going into a horseshoe-shaped path that includes a half loop and a quick roll of 180 degrees. The loop is short and tight, keeping the ride less jarring on riders’ bodies. The momentum that has been built up then leads riders into a 105-foot-tall parabolic arc, where the upward force of the coaster balances with the downward force of gravity, creating a few seconds of weightless airtime. There is also a corkscrew turn, along with a terrifying dive and sideways turn through two towers made of concrete and steel.

Riders on The Gatekeeper will sit suspended from the coaster’s train as if on the wings of a plane, giving them the sensation of flight. Riders will be harnessed into their seats with soft, flexible vests that secure over the upper body. A rigid restraint bar will be placed at their waist.

For those thrill-seekers looking to get in on the action, The Gatekeeper opens at Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio, on May 11. Take a virtual ride on The Gatekeeper in the video below:

Via: Popular Science