SeaWorld San Diego’s Manta – Mack Launch Roller Coaster SeaWorld San Diego has announced details about their planned 2012 roller coaster. The park has confirmed that it will be opening its own Manta roller coaster. Like SeaWorld Orlando’s Manta, the attraction will combine a marine life exhibit with the roller coaster experience.
My first impressions are that San Diego’s Manta is quite a bit less intense than Orlando’s Manta. It sounds like the park was limited by some pretty extreme height restrictions. According to this San Diego Business Journal article, the local government has recommended approval for a 30-foot tall roller coaster. Thirty feet isn’t a whole lot taller than my house. I’d love to hear from some locals or anyone who has visited the park as to what the area is like. That’s about as eye-sore aversive as I’ve ever heard. On this side of the pond at least, see Alton Towers. Luckily, SeaWorld has figured out how to work around this limitation.
Manta also will feature a unique “launch station” where the passengers will start the ride enclosed in a launch tunnel with larger-than-life images of rays projected on a 270-degree enveloping screen. This stunning introduction to the world of the rays also will visually enhance the physical acceleration as the ride launches down the track. This state-of-the-art projection system will be the first of its kind in the United States. – SeaWorld Blog
RCDB already has the new coaster’s vitals. It will be 2,800 feet long, with a height of 30 feet, but a drop of 54 feet sending riders underground, two LSM-powered launches, and a ride duration of 2:00. Overall, I think this West coast version of Manta sounds like a solid attraction. As usual, SeaWorld parks is aiming to make a unique and memorable experience with another heavily-themed custom roller coaster. Orlando’s Manta had an impressive manta ray exhibit in the queue/pre-ride experience. It’ll be neat to see how this Manta uses those projections screens to enhance the on-ride experience. Here’s a video of the ride without the theming: