The first riders have been able to experience the new Mäch Tower ride at Busch Gardens Williamsburg, with months of delays to its opening date set to finally come to an end.
The attraction "soft opened" to the public on August 18, 2011, enabling the park to put the ride through its paces with members of the public for the first time. Opening periods for Mäch Tower could vary over the coming days, with no official opening date having been confirmed. However, it is likely that a permanent opening is imminent for a ride that has had a troubled gestation period.
Theme Park Tourist writer Brian Krosnick was on hand for the start of the soft opening, and has since posted an in-depth review of Mäch Tower.
Manufactured by Italian firm Moser Rides, Mäch Tower sees guests carried to the top of a 246-feet-tall tower in a rotating gondola. They can then take in panoramic views of the entire park, before they plummet at speeds of up to 60 miles per hour back down to the ground below.
The drop tower 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 to its opening date, with Busch Gardens Williamsburg being forced to wait for replacement parts from the supplier before testing could restart.
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.