Thirteen, the ride no TV adverts would give away and stylishly different. Its located at Alton Towers in the United Kingdom. Yet again, another great steel roller coaster created by Intamin with its unique rider’s surprise! Thirteen is the first vertical free-fall drop steel roller coaster ever to me made. The track and train free falls approximately five meters in pitch black darkness. The ride replaced and is built on the former site of the Corkscrew, which resided at Alton Towers for 28 years between 1980 and 2008.
Park visitors were confused in why the corkscrew was removed, during October 2008. It was then announced that the new ride was coming to the park. After the ride was built John Wardley, Ride Consultant for Merlin Entertainments, spoke about the development of Thirteen. The initial idea for the secret element originated from a previous rollercoaster plan that he designed for Alton Towers, in which a piece of track tilted back and forth during the ride. I think that is what roller coaster enthusiasts are looking for these days, something different and unique and not building roller coasters longer, faster, taller, etc. Something with a surprise and this is exactly what they did.
There were various marketing releases, including suspicious text banners, weird and freaky tv commercials. They also announced on their Facebook page that thirteen would be closed on Friday the 13th! Which to me seems so stupid considering it’s revolved round bad luck and spooky happenings!
Here is a description of the ride but of course as normal, I will add the POV at the bottom of the page.
The ride starts with a piercing turn out of the station into a 60-foot lift hill up to the main drop, which sends the train flying into woodland at up to 41 mph. Thirteen’s track layout performs many airtime hills and banked turns, before entering a second lift hill which leads into a dark crypt where the surprise element takes place. Sections of the outdoor track have been fitted with speed-reducing plans due to early difficulties with the ride entering its second lift hill too rapidly.
The entry door is closed behind the train as it comes to a sudden but smooth halt. The crypt room is illuminated with dim lighting and effects such as air blasters and creaking wood sounds. The section of track on which the train comes to a stop suddenly drops around 30 cm. After a pause of around two seconds, the track and train free fall five meters.A wraith figure is illuminated in front of the train, an air blaster fires towards its front as the carriage is propelled backwards out of the crypt.
The train falls down a moderately sharp drop and enters a disorienting backwards helix. It then emerges from the darkness and comes to a halt in front of a section of track which changes to allow the train to be propelled forward several dozen feet back into the station, at which point the ride ends.
I’ve posted 3 videos underneath at the bottom of the page.
News report and POV in day light
Current Coaster Name: Thirteen Current Park Name: Alton Towers Previous Ride Name(s): N/A Location: Stoke on Trent, United Kingdom Status: Operating Links: http://www.altontowers.com/ Cost: 15 Million Pounds Sterling
Type: Steel Opened: 20th March , 2010 Designer: Intamin Features: Terrain, Themed Height: 60 ft (18 m) Max Drop: 56 ft (17 m) Max Speed: 41 mph (66 km/h) Length: N/A Acceleration: N/A Inversions: 0 Duration: N/A Trains: N/A Capacity: N/A