Swarm

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Swarm
Swarm (Thorpe Park) 2012 01.jpg
Thorpe Park
Location Chertsey, Surrey, England
Park section Swarm Island
Status Operating since 15 March 2012
Cost £20,000,000
Soundtrack Yes, by You Me At Six
Height restriction 55 inches (140 cm)
Statistics
Manufacturer Bolliger & Mabillard
Designer / calculations John Wardley
Type Steel - Winged
Product Custom Wing Coaster
Riders per train 28
Hourly capacity 1,100
Propulsion Chain lift hill
Height 38.7 metres
Top speed 95 km/h
Length 775.1 metres
Inversions 5
Duration 1:25
G-Force 4.5
HELP

The Swarm is a winged roller coaster at Thorpe Park in Surrey, England. Built by Bolliger & Mabillard, the ride is the second design of its kind by the Swiss roller coaster manufacturer, the first being Raptor at Gardaland in Italy, which opened in April 2011. It has a post-apocalyptic theme.

History

Plans submitted in 2010 to the local council partially revealed the layout of the new coaster, its maximum height, and its length.[1]

On 21 April 2011, Thorpe Park released an advertising campaign around the park. Hundreds of posters where "flyposted" around the park visible to all. The posters exclaimed that "The end is coming.. Uncover the truth" along with a website LC12.net. The website had a brief description of the possible theme of the ride and also had a countdown until 1 August 2011, when the ride's name was revealed to be The Swarm.[2]

Swarm opened on 15 March 2012.[3] An official single recorded by British band You Me At Six, also titled The Swarm, was released in the same month.[4]

Design

Elements

The ride has five inversions, including the first ever dive drop. It is the second Wing Coaster installation from Bolliger & Mabillard,[5] and has a custom layout.

Trains

7 cars per train. In each car, riders are arranged 4 across in a single row, for a total of 28 riders per train. For the 2013 season, the last two cars were turned to face backwards.[6] A separate queue line was created for accessing the eight backwards-facing seats. All the rows were turned forwards again for the 2016 season.[7]

Theme

The station

The Swarm is themed around a post-apocalyptic swarm of aliens who have destroyed the world, with burnt-out vehicles and smoking objects that look like they have been blown up. The ride is said to give the experience of 'Flying through a crash scene'.

The station is themed to look like a burnt-out church, with the main control room for the roller coaster being situated within an overturned ambulance. It has an open roof.

Often, the train comes close to the theming. On the first drop, a crashed plane acts as a headchopper and the train also comes close to the roof of the station. A billboard was added for the 2013 season, creating a new "keyhole" effect as the train passes through its centre.[6]

References

External links

  • Swarm on the Roller Coaster DataBase.