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Cobra's Curse

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Cobra's Curse
Cobra's Curse elevator lift.jpg
Cobra's Curse elevator lifthill and statue
Busch Gardens Tampa
Park sectionEgypt
Coordinates28°02′04″N 82°25′08″W / 28.0343683°N 82.4188559°W / 28.0343683; -82.4188559
StatusOperating
Opening dateJune 17, 2016
ReplacedKing Tut's Tomb
General statistics
TypeSteel – Spinning
ManufacturerMack Rides
Lift/launch systemElevator lift
Wheel lift
Height70 ft (21 m)
Length2,100 ft (640 m)
Speed40 mph (64 km/h)
Inversions0
Capacity1000 riders per hour
Height restriction42[1] in (107 cm)
Trains8 trains with 2 cars. Riders are arranged 2 across in 2 rows for a total of 8 riders per train.
Cobra's Curse at RCDB
Pictures of Cobra's Curse at RCDB

Cobra's Curse is a steel spinning roller coaster that is located at Busch Gardens Tampa in Tampa, Florida, United States. The ride was manufactured by Mack Rides, features an elevator-style lift, and was the first new ride to open at the park since Falcon's Fury opened in 2014. Cobra's Curse presents a fictional story about the ancient Egyptian ruler the Snake King Venymyss and his curse upon his lost kingdom. The ride has a track length of 2,100 feet (640 m), reaches a height of 70 feet (21 m), and has a maximum speed of 40 mph (64 km/h).

Cobra's Curse is located in the Egypt section of the park and features a 80 feet (24 m) snake statue that depicts King Venymyss, which is located in front of the elevator lift hill. The trains of the ride are able to lock and rotate in three stages; the trains face forward, backward, and then turn in to a free spin. The ride received mostly positive reviews from critics.

History[edit]

Development of the ride began in 2014 around the time of the completion of Falcon's Fury.[2] In February 2015, Busch Gardens Tampa officials acknowledged a new ride would be constructed in the Egypt portion of the park but did not elaborate further. During the same month, permits filed through the Southwest Florida Water Management District that outlined a project titled "BGT 2016 Attraction" were uncovered. The permit detailed the removal of 28,349 square feet (2,633.7 m2) of concrete, specified the expansion of 11,605 square feet (1,078.1 m2) of an existing attraction space known as King Tut's Tomb, and the addition of another 40,751 square feet (3,785.9 m2) consisting of trenches and concrete paths.[3][4][5] Construction for the new attraction in the Egypt area of the park began in March 2015.[2] The park announced on March 17, 2015, that the Serengeti Railway would be temporarily closed for a new attraction that would be along its route in 2016.[6][7]

SeaWorld Entertainment, the parent company of Busch Gardens Tampa, filed the trademark "Cobra's Curse" with the United States Patent and Trademark Office on May 8.[8] On May 28, 2015, Busch Gardens Tampa officials revealed plans to build a new roller coaster that was manufactured by Mack Rides and would be called Cobra's Curse. The new ride was expected to open in 2016.[9][10][11] Busch Gardens President Jim Dean said Cobra's Curse "complements the selection of thrill rides Busch Gardens offers, and we know it's an attraction that guests from across the globe will enjoy".[12]

Throughout the construction of the ride, Jeff Hornick, the regional director of design and engineering at SeaWorld Entertainment, gave updates on the progression of the roller coaster's construction starting in July 2015.[13] The ride was constructed by PCL Construction.[14] Vertical construction of the roller coaster track began on October 9, 2015; construction began in the middle of the layout due to space constraints within that section of the park.[15] During the November-2015 International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) Convention in Orlando, Florida, Mack Rides revealed additional details and a scale model of Cobra's Curse.[16][17]

Media outlets were given a tour of the ride's progress on February 17, which revealed the roller coaster's cars and further information on the ride's theme.[18][19][20][21] On February 29, 2016, the headpiece of the ride's snake statue "King Venymyss" was installed.[22][23] The final piece of track was installed on March 19; this was announced on March 22, 2016.[24][25][26] Busch Gardens Tampa released an on-ride point-of-view shot (POV) video of the attraction on May 11.[27][28] On May 28, 2016, the walls surrounding the attraction were removed.[29] The Orlando Sentinel reported that the ride was nearly completed by June 6; the park released a construction update and another POV video of the ride.[30] On June 10, it was reported the official opening date would be a week later[31][32] and on June 17, 2016, the ride officially opened to the public.[33][34][35]

Ride experience[edit]

Theme[edit]

The ride features the fictional story of the Snake King Venymyss, an ancient Egyptian ruler who was once praised by his followers but became corrupt with power. The followers of the King were betrayed and turned against him, soon afterward destroying his statue from which his powers were granted. In the aftermath, the King placed a curse upon the subjects of anyone who would rebuild his statue.[2][36] In the present, park officials discovered the remnants of the snake tomb and hired archaeologists from the fictional group Viper International Survey and Excavation (VISE) to excavate the area.[37][38]

Queue area[edit]

Cobra's Curse as seen from the Edge of Africa portion of the park

The ride's queue area is divided into different parts to display the narrative of the ride. The first area is an exterior queue titled the "Dig Team Living Quarters", where educational displays about different species of snake are displayed.[38][39] In the interior space of the queue area, guests enter the first chamber, which features a 400 cubic feet (11 m3) enclosure with four species of live snakes;[36] a Bitis nasicornis, a Gaboon viper, a Jameson's mamba, and a Python anchietae.[40][41] After circumnavigating the hallways, guests proceed into the second chamber where projection mapping on a statue and wall depict the story of the ride, exhibiting three shows.[38][42] Thereafter, guests enter the plaza of the ride's station and enter the train to be transported to the elevator lift.[38][39]

Layout[edit]

Upon reaching the top of the ride's 70-foot-tall (21 m) elevator lift, the train turns to the left and banks outward, taking riders closer to the 80-foot-tall (24 m) statue of King Venymyss before continuing along the course.[16] From there, the cart descends the 70-foot (21 m) drop, reaching a maximum speed of 40 mph (64 km/h) and banking right. The cart makes another banked turn over the mid-course brake run before circling back to it. From the mid-course brake run, the two separate vehicles on the train rotate backwards and King Venymyss can be heard saying, "Turn, turn, and face your fear".[43] The cart then descends through a minor helix, which carries it to a wheel lift hill. From there, the cart descends another banked drop, causing the vehicles to spin freely. The cart goes through a series of overbanked turns, and changes in acceleration and velocity while spinning. The cart travels under the Serengeti Railway attraction before entering the final brake run and returning to the station.[43][44][45]

Characteristics[edit]

Location[edit]

Side view of the King Venymyss statue and elevator lift

The Cobra's Curse roller coaster is located on 2.65 acres (1.07 ha) of land in the Egypt section of the park.[5][44] During construction of Cobra's Curse, the Serengeti Railway had to be rerouted, which took about two months to complete.[46][47] The King Tut's Tomb exhibit was removed and re-purposed as part of the queue for Cobra's Curse, [9] An additional market and food place were constructed for the area surrounding the ride.[31][47] An acknowledgement to the former attraction can be seen in the restrooms near the ride; after pushing a "pharaoh" button under the mirror, a mask of King Tut will appear through the glass.[48]

Statue[edit]

The ride's snake statue, King Venymyss, is 80 feet (24 m) tall and was installed as nine pieces stacked on top of one another. During construction, the pieces were installed with a steel spine to keep it in place and the exterior of the structure was created from fiberglass and foam. The headpiece has 3-foot-wide (0.91 m) eyes and 4-foot-long (1.2 m) fangs.[22][23] The completed structure weighs 30,000 pounds (14,000 kg).[31][49]

Trains[edit]

Cobra's Curse trains as they traverse up the wheel lift

The roller coaster was made by Mack Rides, a German ride manufacturer that developed the trains for the ride with individual, spinning cars.[44] Cobra's Curse features a traditional spinning roller coaster train; the individual cars are able to spin at a rate dependent upon the distribution of the rider's weight in each car.[16] The trains are also able to individually lock in place and rotate while on the track using of a motor located under each car.[50] Each train has a unique color scheme and has a lap bar restraint.[18] The trains constantly traverse the layout and the station has a moving belt.[42][51]

Track[edit]

The ride's tubular steel track, which was fabricated in Germany,[52] is 2,100 feet (640 m) long.[44] The ride's track of the ride is green and the supports lining the lift hill are red and yellow.[19] The track was inspired by the 'S'-shaped curvature of the snake.[53] The design of the track allowed for the use of headchopper elements from nearby structures, trenches, attractions, and pathways in the surrounding area.[42] A switch-back track is located behind the station, allowing for easy access for riders who request such assistance.[42][51]

Reception[edit]

Prior to the roller coaster's opening, Tampa Bay Times reported that animal activists were concerned with the prospective treatment of the snakes that would be housed in the queue because of their sensitivity to vibrations.[54] Busch Gardens officials acknowledged these concerns to make the snakes comfortable, watching them and other animals for their reactions to the ride. The company stated that the reptiles would be used for educational purposes.[54]

Upon opening, Cobra's Curse was received positively among critics and guests. Dewayne Bevil of the Orlando Sentinel compared the ride to nearby roller coaster Montu and other roller coasters at the park, finding Cobra's Curse less intense than them. Bevil also wrote that it "fits a nice need, giving thrill seekers a good time without screwing with their equilibrium too much".[55] Alex Volland from the Tampa Bay Times stated the ride was "smooth and family-friendly" and that it "fills the park's need for attractions that parents and kids can experience together".[34] Volland also stated that the queue area of the ride was an "experience of its own".[34] Marjie Lambert of the Miami Herald wrote that the ride hit the mark for a family spinning roller coaster, crediting the park's creative and engineering teams for this and stating, "It’s just enough to add a little spice to a mostly tame ride".[56] Lambert concluded that the ride, "With brief thrills, a little spin and a lot of fun, [family thrill ride is] an apt label".[56] Jeff Siegal of Theme Park Insider commented that the ride is "great for everyone"[57] and that it has "a good amount of spin" that is not sickening and also has a "great amount of theming".[57]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Staff (February 17, 2018). "Live snake exhibit to highlight Cobra's Curse at Busch Gardens". Tampa Bay Online. Tampa Media Group, Inc. Archived from the original on February 18, 2016. Retrieved November 2, 2018.
  2. ^ a b c Cate, Nicole (June 21, 2016). "Beware the Cobra's Curse". The Oracle. Retrieved December 9, 2018.
  3. ^ Yates, Erik (February 10, 2015). "Busch Gardens Tampa files permits for 2016 attraction as construction wraps up around the park". Behind The Thrills. Retrieved January 5, 2019.
  4. ^ Daly, Sean (February 12, 2015). "Busch Gardens to open new ride in 2016". Tampa Bay Times. Times Publishing Company. Retrieved January 5, 2019.
  5. ^ a b Spata, Christopher (February 12, 2015). "New attraction coming to Busch Gardens' 'Egypt' area". The Tampa Tribune. Tampa Media Group, Inc. Archived from the original on February 12, 2015. Retrieved January 5, 2019.
  6. ^ Staff (March 18, 2015). "Busch Gardens' Serengeti train temporarily closes". WTSP. Retrieved January 5, 2019.
  7. ^ Wynne, Sharon Kennedy (March 17, 2015). "Busch Gardens closes railroad to make way for new attraction in 2016". Tampa Bay Times. Times Publishing Company. Retrieved January 5, 2019.
  8. ^ "Cobra's Curse". United States Patent and Trademark Office. Retrieved December 17, 2018.
  9. ^ a b Griffin, Justine (May 28, 2015). "Busch Gardens' new Cobra's Curse ride coming in 2016 (w/video)". Tampa Bay Times. Times Publishing Company. Retrieved May 28, 2015.
  10. ^ Kubersky, Seth (May 28, 2015). "Video: Cobra's Curse family coaster coming to Busch Gardens Tampa in 2016". Orlando Weekly. Euclid Media Group. Retrieved January 3, 2019.
  11. ^ Hammett, Yvette C. (May 28, 2015). "Spin coaster, Cobra's Curse, to open at Busch Gardens in 2016". Tampa Bay Online. Tampa Media Group, Inc. Retrieved January 3, 2019.
  12. ^ Tribou, Richard (May 29, 2015). "Busch Gardens to get new roller coaster in 2016". Orlando Sentinel. Tribune Publishing. Retrieved June 30, 2016.
  13. ^ Hornick, Jeff (July 14, 2015). "Cobra's Curse Construction Update #1". Busch Gardens Tampa. Archived from the original on July 18, 2015. Retrieved January 12, 2019.
  14. ^ Kleiman, Joe (November 10, 2015). "From Cranes to Cobras". InPark Magazine. Retrieved January 13, 2019.
  15. ^ Hornick, Jeff (October 9, 2015). "Cobra's Curse Construction Update #3". Busch Gardens Tampa. Archived from the original on October 16, 2015. Retrieved January 11, 2019.
  16. ^ a b c Bevil, Dewayne (November 18, 2015). "IAAPA: Busch Gardens shares new roller coaster details". Orlando Sentinel. Tribune Publishing. Retrieved November 18, 2015.
  17. ^ Lambert, Marjie (November 17, 2015). "New Busch Gardens coaster will be at temple of snake king". Miami Herald. The McClatchy Company. Archived from the original on November 19, 2015. Retrieved November 2, 2018.
  18. ^ a b Yates, Erik (February 17, 2016). "Busch Gardens Tampa reveals Cobra's Curse cars, and more details!". Behind The Thrills. Retrieved January 6, 2019.
  19. ^ a b Pugh, Jena (February 17, 2016). "Behind the Scenes of Busch Gardens Cobra's Curse Construction". Best of Orlando. Retrieved January 6, 2019.
  20. ^ Wynne, Sharon Kennedy (February 17, 2016). "Sneak peek: See the progress on Busch Gardens' new spinning coaster, Cobra's Curse". Tampa Bay Times. Times Publishing Company. Retrieved January 6, 2019.
  21. ^ "Cobra's Curse: Busch Gardens gives sneak peek of new spinning coaster". Bay News 9. February 17, 2016. Retrieved January 5, 2019.
  22. ^ a b Lee, Banks (March 1, 2016). "Cobra's Curse snake icon installed at Busch Gardens Tampa". Attractions Magazine. Retrieved November 2, 2018.
  23. ^ a b Yates, Erik (March 1, 2016). "Busch Gardens Tampa brings the Snake King home as Cobra's Curse gets topped off". Behind The Thrills. Retrieved November 2, 2018.
  24. ^ McCabe, Adam (March 22, 2016). "Final track piece installed on Cobra's Curse roller coaster at Busch Gardens Tampa". Inside the Magic. Archived from the original on March 22, 2016. Retrieved January 3, 2019.
  25. ^ Niles, Robert (March 22, 2016). "Track Completed for Busch Gardens' Cobra's Curse". Theme Park Insider. Retrieved January 3, 2019.
  26. ^ Groeninger, Alissa (March 22, 2016). "Cobra's Curse nears opening as final track piece installed". WFLA-TV. Retrieved January 3, 2019.
  27. ^ Mauney, Matt (May 11, 2016). "Busch Gardens: See what it's like to ride Cobra's Curse coaster". Orlando Sentinel. Tribune Publishing. Retrieved January 3, 2019.
  28. ^ Staff (May 11, 2016). "Busch Gardens releases video of new Cobra's Curse ride". Tampa Bay Times. Times Publishing Company. Retrieved January 3, 2019.
  29. ^ Yates, Erik (May 28, 2016). "Walls come down on Cobra's Curse at Busch Gardens Tampa!". Behind The Thrills. Retrieved January 3, 2019.
  30. ^ Tribou, Richard (June 6, 2016). "Watch Busch Gardens' new roller coaster Cobra's Curse in action". Orlando Sentinel. Tribune Publishing. Retrieved January 3, 2018.
  31. ^ a b c McMorris, Frances (June 10, 2016). "Take a look at Cobra's Curse, new ride at Busch Gardens opening soon". Tampa Bay Business Journal. American City Business Journals. Retrieved January 5, 2019.
  32. ^ Farquhar, Sunde (June 10, 2016). "Busch Gardens Cobra's Curse roller coaster opens Friday, June 17". WFLA-TV. Retrieved January 5, 2019.
  33. ^ Carter, Ashley (June 16, 2016). "Busch Gardens announces opening date for Cobra's Curse". Bay News 9. Archived from the original on June 16, 2016. Retrieved June 11, 2016.
  34. ^ a b c Volland, Alexa (June 16, 2016). "Ride with us on Cobra's Curse, open Friday at Busch Gardens (w/video)". Tampa Bay Times. Times Publishing Company. Retrieved June 17, 2016.
  35. ^ Bevil, Dewayne (June 10, 2016). "Busch Gardens: Cobra's Curse to open June 17". Orlando Sentinel. Tribune Publishing. Retrieved June 17, 2016.
  36. ^ a b Lambert, Marjie (May 6, 2016). "What's new at Busch Gardens: Cobra's Curse spinning coaster". Miami Herald. The McClatchy Company. Archived from the original on May 7, 2016. Retrieved January 4, 2019.
  37. ^ Storey, Ken (June 25, 2018). "SeaWorld goes all in with new high-tech raft ride but will it ever open?". Orlando Weekly. Euclid Media Group. Retrieved January 4, 2019.
  38. ^ a b c d "The Story of Cobra's Curse at Busch Gardens Tampa (Family Spin Coaster)". Best of Orlando. February 18, 2016. Retrieved January 4, 2019 – via YouTube.
  39. ^ a b "Cobra's Curse story and ride layout details at Busch Gardens Tampa". Attractions Magazine. February 17, 2016. Retrieved January 5, 2019 – via YouTube.
  40. ^ Mauney, Matt (February 18, 2016). "Live snake exhibit to be part of new Busch Gardens roller coaster". Orlando Sentinel. Tribune Publishing. Retrieved December 13, 2018.
  41. ^ McMorris, Frances (June 16, 2016). "Take a virtual ride on Cobra's Curse, now open at Busch Gardens (Video)". Tampa Bay Business Journal. American City Business Journals. Retrieved December 13, 2018.
  42. ^ a b c d Bevil, Dewayne (March 17, 2016). "Busch Gardens: New roller coaster has twists, turns and live snakes". Orlando Sentinel. Tribune Publishing. Retrieved January 5, 2019.
  43. ^ a b "Cobra's Curse front seat on-ride 4K POV Busch Gardens Tampa". Coaster Force. December 4, 2016. Retrieved December 10, 2018 – via YouTube.
  44. ^ a b c d "Cobra's Curse - Busch Gardens Tampa (Tampa, Florida, USA)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved October 22, 2018.
  45. ^ Alvey, Robb (February 17, 2016). "Cobra's Curse Roller Coaster Construction Tour and Train Reveal Busch Gardens Tampa 2016". Theme Park Review. Retrieved January 4, 2019 – via YouTube.
  46. ^ Niles, Robert (March 16, 2015). "Busch Gardens Tampa Makes Way for its New 2016 Coaster". Theme Park Insider. Retrieved January 5, 2019.
  47. ^ a b Lambert, Marjie (April 26, 2016). "Peek behind the scenes at Busch Gardens' new roller coaster". Miami Herald. The McClatchy Company. Archived from the original on April 27, 2016. Retrieved January 5, 2019.
  48. ^ Mateo, Alex (July 1, 2016). "Easter Egg at Cobra's Curse, Busch Gardens Tampa". Best of Orlando. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
  49. ^ Clear, Marty (June 15, 2016). "Cobra's Curse roller coaster opens at Busch Gardens in Tampa". Bradenton Herald. The McClatchy Company. Retrieved January 4, 2019.
  50. ^ "Cobra's Curse Construction Tour at Busch Gardens Tampa". Behind The Thrills. February 19, 2016. Retrieved January 26, 2019 – via YouTube.
  51. ^ a b Mauney, Matt (April 28, 2016). "Watch: Come face-to-fang with snake icon on Cobra's Curse at Busch Gardens". Orlando Sentinel. Tribune Publishing. Retrieved January 6, 2019.
  52. ^ Hornick, Jeff (August 14, 2015). "Cobra's Curse Construction Update #2". Busch Gardens Tampa. Archived from the original on September 10, 2015. Retrieved January 12, 2019.
  53. ^ Lambert, Marjie (May 6, 2016). "What's new at Busch Gardens: Cobra's Curse spinning coaster". Miami Herald. The McClatchy Company. Archived from the original on May 7, 2016. Retrieved January 3, 2019.
  54. ^ a b Wynne, Sharon Kennedy (May 20, 2016). "Will Busch Gardens' spinning Cobra's Curse ride be torture for the snakes?". Tampa Bay Times. Times Publishing Company. Retrieved December 10, 2018.
  55. ^ Bevil, Dewayne (June 30, 2016). "Roller coaster review: Curse is Busch Gardens blessing". Orlando Sentinel. Tronc. Retrieved December 10, 2018.
  56. ^ a b Lambert, Marjie (July 8, 2016). "Curse of the Snake King makes Busch Gardens' new coaster spin". Miami Herald. The McClatchy Company. Archived from the original on July 9, 2016. Retrieved January 3, 2019.
  57. ^ a b Siegal, Jeff (June 16, 2016). "Ride Review: Busch Gardens Tampa's Cobra's Curse". Theme Park Insider. Retrieved December 10, 2018.

External links[edit]