In a recent video update from Theme Park Predictions we get to see how Top Thrill Dragster currently looks and get to hear further predictions regarding the height of the rumored spike.
To start with, although it appears that Iron Dragon has been put back together we don't have confirmation that it will open with the park on opening day May 6. We can also see in the video that the whole lagoon appears to have been drained. There is a lot of gravel in the area which is predicted to be for large cranes to get to and from locations for the construction of the footer.
As you can see, the stones and rocks have now been removed from the original large triangular rumored footer and concrete has been poured into it. There is still speculation regarding the second rumored footer.
There has clearly been digging going on at the station of Top Thrill Dragster but the roof and iconic structure appears to be staying. This digging work could be for the launch track or retrofitting the area for the station.
The question is asked, will the swing launch include a bunny hill? Current predictions say yes. This would be a great way to replace the iconic hydraulic launch of the original Top Thrill Dragster. No confirmation has been given on this as of yet.
There is also talk about what type of restraint Top Thrill Dragster should have. Will there be overhead shoulder restraints, lap bar or Intamin T-Bar? Which would you like to see. Vote in our poll below to have your say.
The burning question, however, still remains, how tall will the spike be? Although there has been huge speculation that the spike could reach the dizzying heights of 500ft it now appears with further research that this will indeed be unlikely.
As we are not expecting the supports to be replaced on the top hat, having a spike 400-500ft could put an enormous amount of strain on the top hat making this a lot less likely than perhaps was originally thought. Also the cost of putting in a spike reaching 500ft would be huge and it seems unlikely that Cedar Fair will want to invest this amount of money.
In the video it is now predicted that a spike of 325-350ft seems a lot more likely. Again, this is all speculation as we still don't have any confirmation from Cedar Point as of yet. We will continue to update you on construction updates and predictions for Top Thrill Dragster on our news and Facebook page.
April 12 - In the construction update posted by Theme Park Predictions in mid-April, we got to see further photo footage of the rumored triangular shaped footer which now appears to have been filled with gravel and wood. There is speculation that this is either to prevent further water filling the hole before they are ready to pump in the concrete or to create a base layer and the concrete will be poured over the top.
The video also shows footage of a potential second footer located behind the coaster's restaurant. If this is the case and a third footer is constructed, Theme Park Predictions speculate that the vertical spike could indeed reach the 500ft mark.
Now, just to reiterate again, this is all speculation and nothing has been confirmed by Cedar Point regarding this rumored vertical spike as of yet and we do not know for sure whether the triangular shape is indeed a footer or the second rumored location is a footer. We will continue to share with you the latest predictions for the exciting reimagining of Top Thrill Dragster and look forward to bringing you confirmation on the exact details fans will get to experience when Top Thrill Dragster reopens in 2024.
Ever since it was announced that Top Thrill Dragster at Cedar Point will be reimagined there have been rumors floated as to what we are likely going to see regarding this extensive project. What we do know is that the hydraulic launch will be replaced by a LSM launch and that Top Thrill Dragster will be closed for the entire of the 2023 and is slated to reopen in 2024.
Back in February, according to the video embedded below which was posted on YouTube by ElToroRyan we got to hear a rumor of a potential layout extension.
In the video we got to see a construction update showing that all of the concrete platforms of the load and unload stations have been removed as well as the control booth. The roof structure on the station was still in place and the large hole in the ground where the rides original storage tracks were previously located was described as likely to be used as part of the new drainage system to direct rainwater into the lagoon and away from the midway to reduce the risk of flooding.
Now more importantly, the video speculated based on reliable sources that we could see a possible layout extension which would stretch further towards the front of the park where the current photo booth stands and is said to involve some sort of massive vertical spike which could be as tall or taller than the current top hat! This new vertical launch would be accompanied by a swing launch rather than a single launch which involves the coaster going forwards and backwards through the same section of launch track in order to build up speed to eventually make it over the top.
According to an update at the beginning of March by Screamscape, during a Winter event at Cedar Point it was noticed that sections of the Iron Dragon's track located just behind the Dragster station has been removed. Tony Clarke from Cedar Point said that this track removal doesn't have anything to do with Top Thrill Dragster but it has been assumed that if indeed Top Thrill Dragster was to receive a rumored layout extension then Iron Dragon's track may have to be temporarily removed in order to install some new track so this has got Cedar Point fans somewhat excited.
Now, at the end of March thanks to an aerial photograph posted on Twitter by ElToroRyan we can clearly see a large triangular area which looks to be the beginnings of a concrete base which would be used to support this rumored rear-spike. This triangular shape also aligns with the station and former Dragster launch track giving us more hope that this rear-spike is to become a reality.
Some nice sheet pile action! Looks to be the start of work to create a large concrete footing! pic.twitter.com/J341Bc8hq3— ElToroRyan (@ElToroRyan) March 27, 2023
Theme Park Predictions has also posted a video update on YouTube estimating the potential height of this rear-spike based on predicted measurements of this speculated concrete footer.
This triangular footer is estimated to be 90ft long with the sides being 42ft in length. The rear spike is predicted to be 400ft+ and is speculated that Cedar Point will be looking to take the record from Kingda Ka at Six Flags Great Adventure which sits at 456ft. The triangular footer appears to be the preferred shape for footers used by Intamin such as in the case of Pantheon at Busch Gardens Williamsburg which could be another clue as to Intamin's involvement in this reimagining.
There is still uncertainty around whether it will be a vertical or twisted spike. The photo booth which was originally speculated to be removed could be converted to the entrance of the attraction and the queue line could possibly be located under the Iron Dragon eliminating it from the central section Top Thrill Dragster.
Rumors of potential layout extensions to Top Thrill Dragster as well as the location of the entrance, exit and queue line are at this stage still just speculation with nothing having been confirmed by Cedar Point regarding this.
We will update you with further details as and when they are announced. What we do know for sure is that the reimagined Top Thrill Dragster reopening at Cedar Point in 2024 certainly looks to be a thrilling one for all roller coaster enthusiasts.
Do you think Top Thrill Dragster should have a vertical or twisted rear-spike? Do you think it should have a swing launch? We will keep you updated on further details regarding the reimagining of Top Thrill Dragster. Let us know your thoughts by leaving us a comment below or on our Facebook page.
While the spike would be cool, to me that’s not the big story. The much bigger story is that the swing launch would basically result in EVERY launch including a deliberate “roll back”!
This is all great, but it still doesn't address the fact they were using low-grade bolts without the proper tensile strength for repairs, which inevitably led to the accident.