I couldn’t close out my coaster critiquing career without one more roller coaster preview list. As I’ve done in years past, I’ll list which new roller coasters opening this year look the best based on what I know about them, the preview videos, and my past experiences with similar rides.
One more time, here are the best-looking new roller coasters opening this year:
8 – Thunderbolt at Luna Park
(Brooklyn, New York) Luna Park at Coney Island has been growing over the past few years. The seaside park’s largest addition to date will be a unique steel roller coaster with an elevator lift and some exciting loops. Borrowing a name from the past, Thunderbolt will open in 2014 adding to the growing screamscape of Coney Island. Watch a video and see more on Luna Park’s new Thunderbolt
7 – Firechaser Express at Dollywood
(Pigoen Forge, Tennessee)
This season Dollywood will open a dual launching roller coaster with its thrill level set to mild as the park describes the ride as a family roller coaster. Interestingly, the ride will feature both a forward and a backward launch.
I’m impressed. Not only does this family roller coaster look good, but it also looks like it’ll provide a fun and lengthy ride. I’ve been hoping for a rebirth or resurgence in mine train roller coasters and this might be the next best thing. Since I’m lucky enough to only be about 4 hours from Dollywood, I’m really looking forward to riding this with my kids. Read more on Firechaser Express or watch a video here.
6 – Lightning Run at Kentucky Kingdom
After remaining closed for several years, Kentucky Kingdom is returning in a big way in 2014. Among a number of park improvements, the park will open a Chance Rides steel coaster called Lightning Run. The mini-hyper coaster layout looks fun with several possible airtime moments and wild turns. This could be the sleeper hit of the year. Watch a ride video of Lightning Run.
5 – Seven Dwarfs Mine Train at Walt Disney World
Announced back in 2012, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is part of the large multi-year Fantasy Land revamp that’s been going on at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. Seven Dwarfs Mine train will have cars that sway left and right.
Also, my wife (MommyB) just got an exclusive preview of the ride. She said that the dwarfs looked very life-like. I’m guessing that it features animatronics similar to the Little Mermaid dark ride. More on Seven Dwarfs Mine Train.