ALTON Towers has released new details of its ‘world-first’ rollercoaster set to cost £18 million.
The steel rollercoaster, codenamed Secret Weapon 7, is being constructed near to the Oblivion rollercoaster in the X-Sector area of the theme park, replacing the Black Hole which was decommissioned in 2005 and which has now been demolished.
It is the biggest single investment on a ride at any Merlin Entertainments-owned tourist attraction in the UK.
The new ride, which was given planning permission by Staffordshire Moorlands District Council back in March, will open to the public on March 16, 2013.
An Alton Towers spokesman said: “It is felt Alton Towers is ready for a big investment and ready for a really big iconic ride.
“It has been 14 years since our last really iconic ride.
“Over the past few years we have been trying to strike the balance between being a family attraction and a site for thrill-seekers. We have now reached that balance.”
While the details of the ride are still a closely guarded secret, there have been a few exclusive facts about the ride released
Highest drop — 30m;
Maximum speed — approximately 85km/hr which is 10km/hr faster than Air;
Track length — 1,170m. This is three times the length of Oblivion;
Ride time — 165 seconds which is three times the ride time of Rita;
Passengers per ride train — 16 (four rows of four);
Minimum rider height — 1.4metres.
Officials hope the new ride will become as iconic as the Air, Oblivion and Rita rides.
Project designer Ben Dowson, who works for Merlin Magic Makers, said: “This ride is the largest investment ever put in to Alton Towers.
“Alton Towers has a good reputation as being a market leader and we are trying to push the limits with our rides.
“It is the biggest rollercoaster we have ever done at Alton Towers and it is not for the faint-hearted.” But theme park officials are still refusing to reveal what will make the ride a ‘world-first’.
Alton Towers official Katherine Duckworth said: “Some details of the new ride are still a closely-guarded secret.
“We still cannot reveal the world-first element.”
Scarefest will have an insight to the new ride next year
ALTON Towers’ annual spooky spectacular will be open for the Halloween period from this weekend offering a brand new scary experience for visitors.
Scare maze The Sanctuary provides an insight into the resort’s new ride in the X Sector of the park in 2013 as well as a terrifying twist.
The Sanctuary has been closed to new patients for almost 50 years, but appointments are now being taken at the re-opened establishment as a controlling force known only as the Ministry of Joy launches a series of trials, recruiting advocates for a new project to be unveiled in 2013.
Katherine Duckworth, head of consumer marketing at Alton Towers, said: “The Sanctuary is set to make Scarefest more terrifying than ever, and give our guests the chance to experience a preview of our new ride before it opens to the public in March.”
Scarefest 2012 will also see the return of old favourites including Terror of the Towers and travelling circus Carnival of Screams.
With the theme park open until 9pm every night, guests can experience a host of adrenalin pumping rides and attractions in the dark! Scarefest runs from Friday until October 31.