Iron Gwazi

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Iron Gwazi
Iron Gwazi (Busch Gardens Tampa) construction 01.jpg
Iron Gwazi under construction in November 2019
Busch Gardens Tampa
Location Tampa Bay, Florida, USA
Status Standing but not operating, expected to open March 11, 2022
Replaced Gwazi
Statistics
Manufacturer Rocky Mountain Construction
Product I-Box Track
Designer / calculations Alan Schilke
Type Steel - Hyper - Hybrid
Riders per train 24
Propulsion Chain lift hill
Height 206 feet
Drop 206 feet
Top speed 76 mph
Length 4075 feet
Inversions 2
Drop angle 91°
Duration 1:50
HELP
Iron Gwazi's Logo.jpg

Iron Gwazi is a steel roller coaster currently under construction at Busch Gardens Tampa in Tampa Bay, Florida, USA. It will be a Rocky Mountain Construction I-Box conversion of the former Gwazi wooden roller coaster. With a drop at an angle of 91 degrees, it will be the first hybrid roller coaster with a beyond vertical drop.

History

The front car from one of the trains on display at IAAPA

On September 12, 2018, when Tigris was announced, Busch Gardens Tampa confirmed that a new thrill ride would take Gwazi's place for 2020.[1] Gwazi remained standing but not operating after closing in February 2015. Later that year, a permit filed with the City of Tampa revealed that Rocky Mountain Construction would be completing the project.[2]

In early 2019, track removal from the Gwazi structure began.

On March 1, 2019, Busch Gardens officially confirmed that the ride would be North America's tallest, and the world's fastest and steepest hybrid coaster and that it would be over 200 feet tall. They also confirmed Rocky Mountain Construction's involvement.[3] Later that month, an FAA permit was filed confirming that the ride would be 210 feet tall and in April track began arriving onsite.

The ride was officially announced on September 12, 2019. The front car from one of the trains was revealed at IAAPA 2019.[4]

The lift hill was topped off in December 2019.[5]

Trackwork was finished on March 7, 2020. Two days later, Iron Gwazi had its first test run.[6] The attraction was slated for a spring debut, but the park closed on March 16 due to the coronavirus pandemic. SeaWorld finally stated that Iron Gwazi would open sometime in 2021.[7] Testing resumed in August 2020, and the attraction has been regularly tested since.[8]

In August 2021, SeaWorld announced that Iron Gwazi would open in March 2022.[9]

In January 2022, it was announced that Iron Gwazi would open on March 11, 2022.[10]

Design

Elements

Iron Gwazi will be a Rocky Mountain Construction IBox Track replacing Gwazi, a Great Coasters International twin wooden coaster that operated from 1999 to 2015. Unlike its predecessor, it will not be a twin roller coaster, but will be almost double the height of both sides at 206 feet tall. It will be a hybrid, like Zadra, and will also draw for tallest hybrid with it. It will become the world's fastest and steepest hybrid and feature the tallest beyond-vertical drop on a coaster at 206 feet, three feet taller than Cannibal's drop.

Trains

2 trains with 6 cars per train. In each car, riders are arranged 2 across in 2 rows, for a total of 24 riders per train.

References

  1. "Busch Gardens Tampa Bay Announces New Multi-Launch Thrill Coaster "Tigris"". PR Newswire. https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/busch-gardens-tampa-bay-announces-new-multi-launch-thrill-coaster-tigris-300711194.html. 
  2. "RMC Gwazi Confirmed for Busch Gardens Tampa!". Coaster Kings. https://www.thecoasterkings.com/rmc-gwazi-confirmed/. 
  3. "New Details Emerge for Busch Gardens Tampa's Massive 2020 Rocky Mountain Coaster". NewsPlusNotes. http://newsplusnotes.blogspot.com/2019/03/new-details-emerge-for-busch-gardens.html. 
  4. "Busch Gardens and SeaWorld parks reveal new coaster cars". Theme Park Insider. https://www.themeparkinsider.com/flume/201911/7110/. 
  5. "Busch Gardens Tampa Tops Off Iron Gwazi With Dizzying New Photo". NewsPlusNotes. https://newsplusnotes.blogspot.com/2019/12/busch-gardens-tampa-tops-off-iron-gwazi.html. 
  6. "Iron Gwazi begins test runs at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay". Orlando Rising. https://orlando-rising.com/iron-gwazi-begins-test-runs-at-busch-gardens-tampa-bay/. 
  7. "SeaWorld and Busch Gardens Parks Postponing 2020 projects to 2021". Coaster101. https://www.coaster101.com/2020/07/30/seaworld-and-busch-gardens-parks-postponing-2020-projects-to-2021/. 
  8. Derrick, Peyton E. (2021-06-11). "When Will Iron Gwazi Finally Open?". Theme Park Tourist. https://www.themeparktourist.com/features/20210611/31678/when-will-iron-gwazi-finally-open. Retrieved 2021-06-14. 
  9. "SeaWorld Entertainment Announces 2022 Opening Dates for New Coasters". NewsPlusNotes. 2021-08-26. http://newsplusnotes.blogspot.com/2021/08/seaworld-entertainment-announces-2022.html. Retrieved 2021-08-27. 
  10. "Busch Gardens' Iron Gwazi opening March 11 as country's tallest hybrid coaster". https://www.abcactionnews.com/lifestyle/taste-and-see/busch-gardens-iron-gwazi-opening-march-11-as-countrys-tallest-hybrid-coaster. 

External links


Articles on Busch Gardens Tampa