Unique coaster opens at Hansa Park
“There are many roller coasters in the world but there is only one Fluch von Novgorod (Curse of Novgorod),” say the folks at Hansa in Germany. This new ride, which opened on April 9, combines a launch system with a vertical chain lift and beyond vertical drop for the very first time. Furthermore, around 50% of the experience takes place in the dark!
The coaster itself has been supplied by Gerstlauer, using an advanced version of its EuroFighter ride system, designed by Stengel. A second phase of the attraction is planned for 2010, when add additional theming will tease riders’ senses with special effects in the dark.
After leaving the station and plunge into an underground tunnel beneath the city of Novgorod, the ride gets off to an intense start as the eight-seater cars are launched into the unknown, reaching 0-100km/h in just 1.4 seconds. The ride uses a linear motor launch system, delivering forces of up to 1.8G and pushing passengers to the back of their bucket seats.
“Hansa Park purposely decided against a long and heavy train in favour of individual cars as these substantially enhance the intensity and thrill of the ride experience,” says a park spokesman. “Riders will have an almost identical ride experience because there are only two rows of seats, meaning the question of sitting in the ‘front or back’ simply doesn’t matter anymore.”
The ride vehicles then shoot out of the dark at a height of over 35-metres. Riders enjoy the fantastic view over the park, combined with a moment of weightlessness, before another hill and a 90° turn, a “sailor’s knot” section and a heartline roll.
The cars then speed back into the dark and enter a tower almost 40-metres high, at which point the chain lift section begins as riders are pulled upwards lying on their backs. Then, suddenly, the car stops. After what seems like a very long time staring into the abyss, riders are hoisted over the last few metres, accompanied by a number of special effects, ready for the 97° drop. This feature gives the attraction the bragging right of “steepest dark ride drop in the world.”
The remainder of the ride takes place in the dark, as the cars enter a long-drawn left-banked turn, an Immelmann loop and a long run out. Only when the top speed at nearly 100 km/h has been reached do the cars enter the brake section. But before the ride returns to the loading area there is one final surprise effect! The complete ride experience lasts roughly two action-packed minutes.
Fluch von Novgorod’s arrival signals the start of a new themed area at the park dedicated to Russia. Cities such as Novgorod and St Petersburg were once part of the Hanseatic League of ports and trading cities that also took in the area around Hansa Park. When phase II of the ride is completed in time for the 2010 season, it will incorporate a rich storyline based around Novgorod legends, as riders discover new secrets inside the Vladimir Tower, Saviour Tower and the citadel.
Hansa Park has set up a dedicated website for this exciting attraction at: www.fluch-von-novgorod.de