Would you want to ride a roller coaster whose sheer force has been ripping the limbs off of crash test dummies? Or one that has been described by a fighter pilot who was given a preview as “gut-wrenching”? Visitors to Thorpe Park in England will have to make that decision in a couple weeks when The Swarm roller coaster opens to the public.
What makes The Swarm different is its winged design. Riders end up sitting away from the track — with nothing above or below them — which makes each twist and turn at up to 62 MPH that much more intense.
The park enlisted four fighter pilots to try out the ride after crash test dummies, who weren’t built strong enough to hold together in the face of The Swarm’s G-force, failed to be proper test subjects. This is what Mark Cutmore, one of the pilots, said about the experience:
I am a self-confessed adrenaline junkie but even as a pilot used to G-force there were some gut-wrenching moments, and I have to admit the near miss element is eye-watering – you really do feel as if you are going to crash into the structures,’ Cutmore explained.
While there isn’t currently a winged-style roller coast in North America, Dollywood in Tennessee, Hershey Park in Pennsylvania and Six Flags Great America in Chicago all plan to debut one by the end of the year. Try it, if you dare.