Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Racer re-ignited interest in roller coasters

The Racer has been a mainstay at Kings Island, and with good reason. A lot of facts and figures have been bandied about concerning the coaster – top height is 88 feet, the course is three-fifths of a mile long, speed is 53.3 miles an hour and the angle of the first drop is 50 degrees.

And if all that means nothing, the Racer is credited for re-igniting the coaster building boom in the early 1970’s, thus beginning the second golden age of the roller coaster. More than 92 million guests have taken a ride on the Racer since it opened in 1972 with the park.

In addition to being considered an important part of the coaster renaissance of the 1970’s, the Racer was the site of several world record riding attempts and is notable for its appearance in the Cincinnati Kids episode of the Brady Bunch, filmed at the park in 1973. On May 28, 1982, it became the first racing coaster to ever run trains backwards on one side of its tracks. In 2007, the American Coaster Enthusiasts named the ride an “ACE Roller Coaster Landmark,” making it one of only 20 roller coasters in the world with landmark status.