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Intimidator 305

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Intimidator 305
Intimidator 305 ride as seen from Eiffel Tower.jpg
Intimidator 305 as seen from the Eiffel Tower
Kings Dominion
Park sectionSafari Village
Coordinates37°50′15″N 77°26′23″W / 37.83750°N 77.43972°W / 37.83750; -77.43972Coordinates: 37°50′15″N 77°26′23″W / 37.83750°N 77.43972°W / 37.83750; -77.43972
Opening dateApril 2, 2010 (2010-04-02)
General statistics
ModelGiga Coaster
Lift/launch systemCable lift hill
Height305 ft (93 m)
Drop300 ft (91 m)
Length5,100 ft (1,600 m)
Speed90 mph (140 km/h)
Max vertical angle85°
Capacity640 riders per hour
Height restriction54–78 in (137–198 cm)
Trains2 trains with 8 cars. Riders are arranged 2 across in 2 rows for a total of 32 riders per train.
Fast Lane Plus only available
Intimidator 305 at RCDB
Pictures of Intimidator 305 at RCDB

Intimidator 305 is a steel roller coaster located at Kings Dominion in Doswell, Virginia, United States. Manufactured by Intamin, Intimidator 305 opened to the public on April 2, 2010, as the park's fourteenth roller coaster. The roller coaster is located in the Safari Village section of the park near Anaconda on the former site of the Safari Monorail ride.[2] Standing at 305 feet (93 m) tall and reaching speeds of 90 miles per hour (140 km/h), it is the second Giga Coaster to be built in North America – the first was Millennium Force at Cedar Point. The $25 million investment was the largest of any ride in the park's history. It is named and themed after NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt, who was also known as the Intimidator.[3]

Intimidator 305 has a first drop of 300 feet (91 m), with a maximum descent angle of 85 degrees.[2] Intimidator 305 features yellow supports with red track. The lift hill structure for Intimidator 305 is unique in that the lift hill and crest only have two main points of support.[4] The overall height of Intimidator 305 is higher than the observation platform of the park's Eiffel Tower replica, making it one of the tallest rides at Kings Dominion.[5]



Intimidator 305, the first Giga Coaster built since Steel Dragon 2000 in 2000, was announced on Thursday, August 20, 2009. Local news media, then Cedar Fair CEO Dick Kinzel and Dale Earnhardt Incorporated CEO Jeff Steiner, and Dale Earnhardt's daughter Taylor Earnhardt were in attendance to the announcement. The official announcement, led by Kings Dominion Head Manager Ed Kuhlmann, was accompanied by animation videos of the ride and a working model. The roller coaster is themed to NASCAR racing legend Dale Earnhardt.[5][6][7]


Intimidator 305 sits on the former land occupied by the Safari Monorail which closed in 1993.[8] Kings Dominion broke ground on Intimidator 305 on June 1, 2009. The first pieces of track arrived a few days later. On August 19, the first pieces of steel were put into place.[6] The 305-foot (93 m) lift hill was topped off in November 2009.[4] Construction crews continued to construct the ride throughout the winter and the last piece of track was lifted into place on January 9, 2010.[9] Intimidator 305's first test run was on Sunday, March 14, 2010.[10]


Some riders experienced problems due to the G-forces inherent in the ride's original design. Riders reported greying or blacking out after the first drop. Kings Dominion temporarily installed trim brakes on the first drop in order to reduce the speed while a long-term solution could be devised. The brakes were adjusted and positioned by late May 2010.[11][12]

During the following off-season, Kings Dominion widened the first high-speed turn to lower the amount of G-force experienced on the ride. The park's goal was to reduce the number of blackouts some riders were experiencing. The modification allowed them to remove the trim brakes on the ride's first drop, making it possible for the roller coaster's maximum speed to return to original specifications.[12]

Ride experience[edit]

Lift hill and sign
The silver train in the brake run, with the old restraints

Intimidator 305 has been described as a mix of both Millennium Force and Maverick, both located at Cedar Point. Intamin designed the ride to feature the high lift hill like Millennium Force. Following the lift hill are low-to-the-ground tight turns and hills, similar to Maverick.[8][13] The ride features six air-time humps and three near-ground-level high-speed turns over 5,100 feet (1,600 m) of track.[3]


While the train is being loaded in the station, the catch car of the cable lift is latched onto the middle car of the train. Before the train leaves the station, a recording that states, "Gentlemen, start your engines!" is heard followed by a loud revving sound. Once the train is dispatched, the train ascends the 45-degree lift hill at 17 miles per hour (27 km/h) to a maximum height of 305 feet (93 m). Once the train crests the top of the lift, the train descends down the 300-foot (91 m), 85-degree drop, reaching speeds up to 91 miles per hour (146 km/h). The drop is steep enough and sudden enough that riders towards the back of the train are thrown out of their seats into the restraints, so that during the 300-foot near-vertical drop they feel as if they're about to fall out of the ride. The train turns right into a 270-degree turn before ascending the 150-foot (46 m) airtime hill. The train then descends into a high-speed bunny hop before entering another high-speed turn. The train then maneuvers 3 sharp twists before entering the final high-speed turn. The train then climbs another airtime hill with brakes, followed by another airtime hill before entering a final twist and then climbing a small, twisty bunny hop into the magnetic brakes. One cycle of the ride lasts about 3 minutes.[2][14][15][16]

Trains and theme[edit]

Intimidator 305 features two trains themed as Dale Earnhardt's black number 3 car. The trains feature headlights at the front of each train as well as advertisement stickers that are found on NASCAR cars. One train is red with the other being silver. Each train has eight four-passenger cars, allowing thirty-two passengers per train. The trains are arranged in stadium-style seating with overhead lap bars fitted with soft, padded over-the-shoulder straps.[13] In early July 2010, the ride received a unique new restraint design. The over-the-shoulder part of the harness now resembles a padded seat belt rather than the typical over-the-shoulder restraints used by Intamin.


Golden Ticket Awards: Top steel Roller Coasters
Year 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2017 2018
Ranking 11[17] 13[18] 12[19] 10[20] 13[21] 16[22] 13[23] 12[24]


While performing a test run prior to the park opening on July 9, 2013, one of the roller coaster trains became stuck near the top of the lift hill. The train was eventually brought down a week later, and the ride remained closed for more than two months. Kings Dominion later explained the closure through a statement released on their official Facebook page on August 28, 2013, which stated that a problem with the weight distribution on the gearbox caused a part to warp and fail. The replacement part had to be custom-built in another country, causing the extended closure. The ride reopened on September 14, 2013.[25][26]

Date Reopened Details Refs
July 9, 2013 September 14, 2013 The weight distribution of Intimidator 305's gearbox caused a part to warp and fail which caused a pre-opening test run train to stall on the hill. A custom built gearbox was shipped and commissioned in September with the ride reopening a couple weeks later. [25][26]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "The Ride". Kings Dominion. Archived from the original on January 4, 2010. Retrieved August 5, 2012.
  2. ^ a b c Marden, Duane. "Intimidator 305  (Kings Dominion)". Roller Coaster DataBase.
  3. ^ a b "Press Release on RCDB". August 20, 2009. Archived from the original on February 14, 2010. Retrieved August 5, 2012.
  4. ^ a b Pagel, John. "Complex Build". Kings Dominion. Archived from the original on January 4, 2010. Retrieved August 5, 2012.
  5. ^ a b "Intimidator 305 announcement Part. 1". Coastercrew. Retrieved August 5, 2012.
  6. ^ a b Pagel, John. "Are you Intimidated yet?". Kings Dominion. Archived from the original on January 4, 2010. Retrieved August 5, 2012.
  7. ^ "Kings Dominions Intimidator 305 Announcement Part 2". coastercrew (YouTube). August 20, 2009. Retrieved 4 October 2012.
  8. ^ a b "Coaster Net - Intimidator 305". Coaster Net. Retrieved August 5, 2012.
  9. ^ Pagel, John. "Full Curcuit". Kings Dominion. Archived from the original on December 31, 2010. Retrieved August 5, 2012.
  10. ^ "Intimidator 305 testing". Coastercrew. Retrieved August 5, 2012.
  11. ^ "Screamscape 1". Screamscape. Archived from the original on July 20, 2010. Retrieved August 6, 2012.
  12. ^ a b "Intimidator 305 improved". Coaster-Net. Archived from the original on December 19, 2011. Retrieved August 7, 2012.
  13. ^ a b "Intimidator 305 Opening Day interviews". Coastercrew. Retrieved August 6, 2012.
  14. ^ Bullock, Joel (August 31, 2010). "Intimidator 305 @ Kings Dominion". The Coaster Critic. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  15. ^ "Intimidator 305 POV". 2010. Retrieved August 7, 2012.
  16. ^ "Track Layout". Kings Dominion. Retrieved October 4, 2012.
  17. ^ a b "Top 50 steel Roller Coasters" (PDF). Amusement Today. 14 (6.2): 34–35. September 2010. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 19, 2013. Retrieved September 14, 2015.
  18. ^ "Top 50 steel Roller Coasters" (PDF). Amusement Today. 15 (6.2): 38–39. September 2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 19, 2013. Retrieved September 14, 2015.
  19. ^ "Top 50 steel Roller Coasters" (PDF). Amusement Today. 16 (6.2): 36–37. September 2012. Retrieved September 14, 2015.
  20. ^ "2013 Top 50 steel Roller Coasters" (PDF). Amusement Today. 17 (6.2): 34–35. September 2013. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 19, 2013. Retrieved September 14, 2015.
  21. ^ "2014 Top 50 steel Roller Coasters" (PDF). Amusement Today. 18 (6.2): 46–47. September 2014. Retrieved September 14, 2015.
  22. ^ "2015 Top 50 steel Roller Coasters" (PDF). Amusement Today. 19 (6.2): 49–50. September 2015. Retrieved September 14, 2015.
  23. ^ "2017 Top 50 steel Roller Coasters" (PDF). Amusement Today. 21 (6.2): 46. September 2017. Retrieved September 14, 2015.
  24. ^ "2018 Top 50 steel Roller Coasters" (PDF). Amusement Today. 22 (6.2): 45. September 2018. Retrieved September 14, 2015.
  25. ^ a b "Intimidator 305 is Temporarily Closed". Retrieved January 27, 2014.
  26. ^ a b Petenbrink, Troy (September 13, 2013). "Award-winning coaster reopens in time for gay night at Kings Dominion". Metro Weekly. Archived from the original on February 2, 2014. Retrieved January 27, 2014.

External links[edit]