Roller Coaster of the Day: Formula Rossa – Ferrari World

Name: Formula Rossa

Location: Ferrari World Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Opening Year: 2010

Built By: Intamin A.G.

Top Speed: 149.1 MPH (!)

Height: 170 feet

Ladies and gentlemen…THE FASTEST ROLLER COASTER IN THE WORLD.

First thing that popped into my head:

“Why is this so #$#@%ing far away???” Seriously? Abu Dhabi? When am I ever going to get my ass down to Abu Dhabi to ride this beast?

picture courtesy http://www.themeparkreview.com

Throw that around in your head for a while. The world’s fastest coaster. At a blistering 150 miles per hour.

Let me say that again.

One hundred and fifty miles per hour.

That, my friends, is fast.

Everyone here has heard about Dubai and their recent construction explosion. Riding on the oil boom, the UAE has grown to be one of the richest countries in the Middle East. The skyline of Dubai and Abu Dhabi grows more every day (until the housing market collapsed that is).

Ferrari World is a massive complex that consists of a Ferrari Museum, several ride-through attractions, a few smaller rides…and this hulking beast of a roller coaster.

However, a huge top speed does not a great coaster make, to paraphrase Sophocles.

After what seems like aeons rushing down the launch track at a speed that you just know isn’t meant for humans to endure, the train promptly slams into a set of unforgiving brakes that slow the train down to “only” around 70 miles per hour. Which is still plenty fast, but compared to 150, it’s a stroll in the park. The rest of the layout is comprised of a relatively middle-of-the-road collection of airtime hills and curves.

picture courtesy http://www.themeparkreview.com

Built by Intamin A.G. of Switzerland (the geniuses behind Xcelerator), Formula Rossa actually requires riders in the front seat to wear protective goggles – the dusty air of Abu Dhabi could be dangerous to your eyes at that high of a speed.

The former record was held by Kingda Ka of Six Flags Great Adventure; it opened in 2005 (just five years prior to Formula Rossa) and held a top speed of 128 MPH, which seems positively paltry in comparison.

Which makes you wonder, where will we be in the next five years?

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