Holiday World recently opened their newest and only steel coaster, Thunderbird. The team here at ISI was lucky enough to be invited for the Media Preview and to do a review of the ride, needless to say, we were all excited!
While it was cold, it was also a clear and bright day in Indiana when we first laid eyes on the wing coaster the park has been teasing us with for months.
While not a fan of wing coasters in general, I was hoping that the new Thunderbird would change my mind on the matter. In the past I've found this style of coaster nice but rather lacking in the thrill factor, they seem almost too relaxed in my opinion..
...then Thunderbird happened.
The launch is the key factor, with this coaster being the first ever launching B&M in addition to being a wing coaster, Holiday World has found the magic touch once again to provide a world-class ride to the coaster fans of the world. While the design of a wing coaster still has a smoothness, which is easy to enjoy, the launch and the elements that Thunderbird has will pull cheers from any coaster fan, it will also likely convert some fans who might be having doubts about a steel coaster in the middle of so many amazing wooden coasters. Thunderbird simply fits, it belongs in this park.
Theme of the Thunderbird
The opening launch is amazing, this is when you really feel the 'legend' come to life. Between the fog, the heavy sound effects set to rumble the entire entire and the launch? You feel like the legend really has risen and your about to go on the flight of your life.
So, the ride?
Come on! A lunched B&M that is also a terrain coaster? It's a design and dream come true!
Smooth as silk, with enough thrills and force to make the heart of any coaster fan rejoice. I can't put into words just how much fun this new coaster is, simply put, it was enough to change my opinion on wing coasters in general. Tossed into the sunshine at 60 MPH in 3.5 seconds, your flown through the woods, skimming near trees, and swooping about over 3,035ft of track.
Between B&M and Holiday World they mimicked the movements a large bird would take, the graceful track of this coaster just proves that it was a thing of love and not just a way to spend money. The ride you experience is even more worth it!
If you put your hands out, close your eyes and simply feel, this is the closest thing to flying that a human (obviously without wings) can enjoy! The ride alone is tucked into the back of the park and I'd bet once the trees grow in the 'flying' feeling will be even more intense. This coaster really is a legend risen and you get to go along for the flight.
Holiday World already has a reputation for world-class coasters with their woodies and I know a lot of people (myself included) had some doubts that a steel coaster would ever be able to keep up with the reputation. To me? It does, this ride fits perfect with this park and is a credit to the family. Put your doubts to rest, go out to Holiday World this 2015 season and ride Thunderbird.