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Busch Gardens Williamsburg has recommenced testing of its new Mach Tower ride, with rumors suggesting that the much-delayed addition could still open before the end of July.

Eagle-eyed fans posting to the BGWFans forums have reported seeing Mach Tower put through its paces repeatedly over the last few days. However, many have stated that the drop tower ride's vehicle is not rotating on its way to the top, as is intended to be the case when it opens. Meanwhile, unconfirmed rumors have suggested that employees will have the chance to test out the ride this weekend (July 16-17).

The most recent eyewitness reports, posted to Screamscape, suggest that Mach Tower's vehicle is now being dropped at full speed during the tests. However, it appears to be rising to the top of the ride's 246-feet-tall tower more slowly than would be expected.

Mach Tower, manufactured by Italian firm Moser Rides, was originally scheduled to open by May 28, 2011. Previous reports have suggested that the failure to properly install shock absorbers at the base of the ride's tower may have led to the extended delay, with Busch Gardens Williamsburg being forced to wait for replacement parts from the supplier before testing could restart.

Mach Tower's seats will rotate as the guests ascend the tower, providing panoramic views of the entire park before they plummet at speeds of up to 60 miles per hour back down to the ground below. Busch Gardens Williamsburg has promised that riders will experience some "surprises" when they reach the top of the tower, although the nature of these has not yet been confirmed.

You can keep up to date with the latest confirmed and rumored opening dates for new attractions through Theme Park Tourist's "New Attraction Watch" section, and by signing up for our weekly newsletter.


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