Top Thrill Dragster 2022 Status

Rusty's avatar

That Crazy Dan said:

^ You're not wrong, that lawn care/mower/tractor display has to have been there in some shape or form for at least twenty years now, or at least since 2006ish at a minimum. I figure it's a local advertising deal and nothing wrong with that since it's clearly been a long relationship.

The John Deere display was there when my nephew was barely able to walk or talk (born in 1999, so this was maybe 2001?). It was his favorite part of the entire park at that point - more excited about that than ANY of the rides. Last fall he was the trumpet player in the Halloweekends evening show at the main stage.

Last edited by Rusty,

Proud to have fathered a second generation coaster enthusiast destined to keep me young at heart and riding coasters with a willing partner into my golden years!

I don’t remember any paint marks when Wicked Twister was removed, correct me if I’m wrong.

DRE420's avatar

There were survey markings near maxair and by the gatekeeper entrance Plaza last season before anything was announced.

I didn't want to double post so I'll just add this story here that I found while searching TTD related incidents. Back a few years ago I thought I remembered reading about a brake fin malfunction on the launch side that resulted in severe damage to several of the fins. I also thought I read that a witness saw one of the said fins fly off the track and hit the midway pretty hard, and luckily it didn't strike a person. I posted the link to the story below and it shows the pictures of the mangled fins, but no mention of it hitting the midway so I may be wrong. Anybody remember hearing that?

Last edited by DRE420,
Kevinj's avatar

Not to mention Wicked Twister's removal largely took place when there would be no one around to see any markings. It wasn't even announced until early November if I am remembering correctly.

Unless Coasterhawk saw them on the webcam.

Last edited by Kevinj,

Promoter of fog.

vwhoward's avatar

^Well is there an assumption the process (whatever it may be) will start before season's end?

Eat 'em up, Tigers, eat 'em up!

JK125's avatar

Wicked Twister's removal was announced during the season. I think it closed on Labor Day. They had some promotions to be part of the last launch.

vwhoward's avatar

^It was announced on August 6th. And closed September 7th. Not really relevant here as Dragster is already closed and there would be no "final rides" if it is taken down. They could start certain things before the season ends.

Eat 'em up, Tigers, eat 'em up!

TwistedCircuits's avatar

Interesting read, thank you for sharing.I can't say I've heard of one hitting the midway, but that description of catch car breaks is amusing to me, those are train break fins I'm pretty sure. The dimensions don't look right for inside the catch car track.But I don't work on the ride so I can't say that positively.

Still haven't been able to uncross these circuits...
DJ Fischer

Kevinj's avatar

Thursday will be an interesting day with regards to the ride's fate. Keep in mind that those of us here discussing this know that changes are coming in some form, but also keep in mind that 93.4% of the population doesn't look down and concern themselves with spray-painted markings around an attraction that's down.

Point being (pun intended), will they say anything about Dragster on Thursday?

If nothing is mentioned I would suggest that's bad news for the ride. With the surveying being done, a decision has been made one way or the other; that much is certain. I would think that if there are simply changes being made for it to "more safely" reopen, that would be considered positive and tossed in the basket of all the other positive exciting news. "Hey guess what, TTD is back and here is how!"

If it's not re-opening, why bother saying something to put a bad note on an otherwise exciting announcement about what's to come?

"Hey look at this cool new pavilion with all you can eat Lake Erie perch for people named Kevin"....

"Oh and hey, Dragster?'s not coming back"

Last edited by Kevinj,

Promoter of fog.

vwhoward's avatar

Could guys named Joe get in on that all you can eat perch?

Eat 'em up, Tigers, eat 'em up!

Even if the ride is reopening, I could still see a quieter announcement coming at a later date. Having a celebratory announcement about Dragster during an announcement with media could easily be seen as poor taste when we still don't know the condition of the accident victim, and this announcement will be just a few days before the one year mark of the accident.

I disagree. If this is your new for 2023 attraction announcement you’d likely want to pile in as much good news as you can to sell passes, including the return of a previously closed ride.

That being said, I’m strongly in the camp that TTD has seen the last of its rides.

Even if TTD does reopen, I have a strong feeling that they won’t say anything until winter, not unlike what they did when they first built it.

I know it's already been mentioned in here, but assuming TTD is staying, what would be the statue of limitations for when the park could say anything reasonably upbeat about the ride? Closest example I can think of with a ride causing 'life-altering' injuries would be the Smiler at Alton Towers, and while I can't really say how much the park is or isn't promoting it since I'm not attuned to the UK scene, it still opened a year later with the same theme.

Or are we just to assume that the American public is permanently in "I'm not going on Roller Coaster 1, it isn't safe" mode? Those of you saying that saying anything positive about TTD would be in bad taste, what about offering commemorative pieces like they did with Wicked Twister? Or would that be something you'd just hold onto a handful of TTD track for a few years and -then- release?

djDaemon's avatar

I wouldn't think they'd need to make any announcement either way, not only because making any sort of fanfare in either scenario could be considered in poor taste, but also because either outcome is self-evident.

If the decision has been made to reopen it, you will notice by the fact that the ride is operating next season. The park doesn't need to say anything, ever, other than perhaps, in the event they re-route the queue, the canned response of "safety is our number one priority, and we're constantly evaluating our safety protocols and making adjustments to ensure all of our guests are safe", or whatever.

If the decision has been made to remove it, you will notice by the fact that the ride is no longer present next season (or by offseason photos from Battery Park showing the tophat removed). The park still doesn't need to say anything, other than their canned response of "we don't comment on future plans" or whatever.

The comparison to Smiler is interesting, but I don't think a great one overall. With Smiler, it was a tragic, preventable case of operator error that should never have been allowed to occur, and can reasonably be prevented from recurring. Based on the admittedly little we can ascertain from the report on this TTD incident, there was no operator nor obvious maintenance error, assuming the report's findings are accurate. And I am forgetting - was there anything that "went wrong" with the cable incidents, such as maintenance or cable production issues?

And while the devastating injuries from the Smiler incident have no doubt profoundly impacted the victims' lives in ways that are difficult to comprehend, they don't, to my knowledge, require a daily caregiver to simply get through the basic tasks of the day, as the victim of this accident reportedly does.


Thabto's avatar

TTD has been a money pit since Day 1. I'm sure if we were able to see the operating costs of TTD compared to other attractions, it would be significantly higher. Even Kinzel regrets the ride according to his book. Son of Beast closed and never opened again after someone got a concussion which is far less serious than this incident.

Valravn Rides: 24| Steel Vengeance Rides: 27| Dragster Rollbacks: 1

^Was a burst blood vessel in the brain. Besides the 2006 incident, Son of Beast had many reports of injuries between 2006 and 2009. The ride was a design flaw from the get go and the investigation showed that.

While similar, I think the two have slightly different circumstances. Son of Beast was standing for quite some time before they decided it wasn't financially feasible (after all, they would've had to replace almost the entire ride). Just wonder what RMC might have been able to do with it if they weren't in their infancy.

However, just like the blood vessel was the final nail in the coffin, this incident may be the same for TTD. We will (hopefully) soon find out.

djDaemon, I think you’re being slightly laissez-fair in your approach to the end or this. To think that people have essentially forgotten that TTD is down (and why it is) and will notice the eventual outcome only in passing is preposterous. The park will absolutely need and want to put their own spin on a subject that, regardless of the outcome, will draw immediate attention from media outlets. It was a big news item and the results of that story will be the same.

djDaemon's avatar

I did not suggest that anyone has forgotten that it's down or why, quite the opposite in fact.

I agree, and pointed out above, that the park will have canned PR responses at the ready in the event that they open the ride next year, or if it's gone from the landscape. I just don't see them making some grand announcement ahead of time, as some have suggested. That seems like the wishful thinking from enthusiasts who want that to be the case because they want a golden goose noooooooowwwwww.


I'm not sure there's any hypothetical scenario regardless of whether TTD reopens or comes down, that won't still be spun as a negative by the local media and non-coaster nerd social media, short of maybe turning TTD into a permanent memorial to the injured guest and their family.

But yeah, if you're taking it down, I kind of err on the side of you want to make the minimum acknowledgement of it that's not seen as drawing attention to it in one direction or trying to diminish it in the other direction.

I don't see any scenario where CP goes the full Chris Benoit route and just scrubs the ride from their history, though it's humorous to me since it would be a weird sort of full circle of "there is absolutely nothing behind this fence" like it was for however many months of the tower rising before the announcement back when.

Closed topic.

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