The removal of a countdown clock on the official teaser site for Alton Towers' SW7 roller coaster has sparked speculation that the ride's opening date will be delayed.
The countdown previously appeared on the SW7 mini-site, and was ticking down until the coaster's planned debut on March 16. However, it has now been removed, suggesting that the ride's debut has been pushed back until a later date.
Alton Towers was originally aiming to open SW7 on the first day of its 2013 season, and could face angry complaints from guests who have booked in advance if the ride is not operating by that date. Construction is currently ongoing in the area that was formerly occupied by the Black Hole, but fansite Towers Street reports that large sections of track remain to be installed.
Manufactured by Gerstlauer, the £18 million addition is claimed to be the "first coaster of its kind in the world". Its circuit will feature at least 8 inversions and 2 lift hills, and will be located alongside the existing Oblivion roller coaster. Alton Towers has previously claimed that the ride will feature a "world's first" element, and while several rumours are circulating on the web, the park has yet to confirm the nature of this.
For more details of Alton Towers' new addition for 2013, see Theme Park Tourist's detailed breakdown of the SW7 plans.
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