The 2016-17 A-Z Coaster of the Week Roundup

After 26 weeks featuring 26 different roller coasters, each starting with a different letter of the alphabet, we finally wrapped up our 2016-2017 version of our A-Z Coaster of the Week series, and I thought it would be interesting to look at a recap of all the roller coasters we covered this year, and the wide range of types of ride.

A-Z Coaster of the Week map

Our map of the A-Z Coasters of the Week, criss crossing the US with one stop in Asia and one in Europe. Arrows go in order of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple.

The coasters we looked at included a healthy mix of wood and steel. We featured operating rides, moved rides, and long gone rides. The majority of the featured rides were from all across the United States, plus we had a couple from overseas.  The coasters covered a whole range of periods, from rides built in the 1920s to rides built in the last couple of years.  Most of the roller coasters had some sort of unique feature, or were the first to do something. For example, we looked at Revolution, the first modern looping coaster, Ultra Twister, the only Pipeline coaster in the US, and New Texas Giant, the first coaster with Rocky Mountain Construction’s popular IBox track.

New Texas Giant is the one hybrid coaster we featured this year.

Here are some of the stats on the coasters we covered:

  • We featured 10 wood coasters, 15 steel coasters, and 1 hybrid coaster (New Texas Giant)
  • Both the first coaster in the series, Arkansas Twister, and last coaster, Zeus, were wood
  • Three of the wood coasters we featured all had the word “Dipper” in them, including a Little, Big, and Giant Dipper!
  • Of the wood coasters we featured, two were built in the 1920s, one in the 30s, two in the 50s, one in the 60s, one in the 70s, one in the 90s, one in the 00s, and one in the 10s. So, we covered the whole age of wooden coasters
  • On the steel side, three of them were from the 70s, three from the 80s, no 90s coasters, six from the 00s, and four from the 2010s (including our one hybrid).
  • The 26 coasters were made or designed by 16 different companies or people, quite the range!
  • The most common coaster manufacturer/designers we featured were PTC and Arrow, each with three coasters in the series
  • Of the 26 rides, 7 of them are no longer operating, but the rest can all still be ridden!

jack Rabbit is the oldest coaster we featured, built in 1920 (courtesy coastergallery.com)

The Giant Dipper is our second oldest, built in 1924 (courtesy Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk)

Some of the stand out featured rides? The oldest coaster we looked at was Jack Rabbit at Kennywood, built in 1920 and still running! The other 1920s coaster was Giant Dipper at the Santa Cruz Boardwalk, ALSO still operating! The most recent coaster we featured? Our beloved Fury 325 at Carowinds.

And the newest coaster featured, Fury 325.

The coaster that no longer operates that you could have most recently ridden? Disaster Transport closed at Cedar Point in 2012. How ’bout the coaster that had the shortest life? That was Maxmimum RPM! It was open for only 2 years in 2008 and 2009, although it is supposed to reopen this year in Vietnam.

Maximum RPM! had a two year life, the shortest of every coaster we featured (courtesy Theme Park University/Irvine Ondrey Engineering)

Speaking of overseas parks, while we mostly featured US rides, we had a couple overseas coasters. We looked at one coaster in the UK, Thirteen at Alton Towers, and one coaster in Indonesia, Yamaha Racing Coaster.

Thirteen (or Th13teen) at Alton Towers is one of the two overseas coasters we featured.

Of all the coasters we looked at, one has VR available on it these days. That’s Revolution at Six Flags Magic Mountain, now known as New Revolution. I haven’t verified this, but Revolution might also have the most name changes of any coaster we featured.

The refurbished version of Revolution, New Revolution, is the only VR Coaster on our list. Also the first looping coaster.

Finally, of all the A-Z posts this year, our most popular was the one on Disaster Transport. Who doesn’t love unusual, defunct rides, right? The second most popular? The unique Intamin launch coaster at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, V2: Vertical Velocity. We like those one of a kind coasters.

Disaster Transport, your most beloved, defunct, ride we featured!

V2 was also a popular feature, maybe because it’s one of a kind?

Check out links of all 26 posts below in case you missed any this year. Let us know in the comments (or on Facebook or Twitter) what your favorite of our A-Z Coasters is, and tell us what rides you want us to feature next time!


A-Z Coaster Full List

 

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