Saw – The Ride

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Saw The Ride
Thorpe Saw-1.jpg
Sawopen.jpg
The 100 degree drop and Immelmann Loop
Thorpe Park
Park section Old Town
Coordinates 51°24′09″N 0°30′43″W / 51.402623°N 0.511905°W / 51.402623; -0.511905Coordinates: 51°24′09″N 0°30′43″W / 51.402623°N 0.511905°W / 51.402623; -0.511905
Status Operating
Opening date 14 March 2009 (2009-03-14)
Cost £13.5 million
General statistics
Type Steel – Euro-Fighter
Manufacturer Gerstlauer
Designer Merlin Studios
Model Eurofighter
Track layout Custom
Lift/launch system Vertical chain lift hill
Height 100 ft (30 m)
Length 2,362 ft (720 m)
Speed 55 mph (89 km/h)
Inversions 3
Duration 1:40
Max vertical angle 100°
Height restriction 140 cm (4 ft 7 in)
Trains 8 trains with a single car. Riders are arranged 4 across in 2 rows for a total of 8 riders per train.
Theme Saw film franchise
Website Official website
Saw The Ride at RCDB
Pictures of Saw The Ride at RCDB

Saw – The Ride is a Gerstlauer Euro-Fighter roller coaster located at Thorpe Park in the United Kingdom. Designed by Merlin Studios and manufactured by Gerstlauer, the roller coaster opened to the public on 14 March 2009. The ride is themed to the Saw film franchise and features several references to the franchise. It features an enclosed dark section and 'beyond-vertical' drop of 100º, the steepest roller coaster drop in the world at its opening.

History[edit]

Thorpe Park announced plans for a new roller coaster on 14 October 2008.[1] Thorpe park created a dedicated website for the new ride, hyperbolically claiming it would be "the scariest ride in the world".[2] The official press release detailing the park's fourth major roller coaster confirmed a development partnership with Lionsgate and Twisted Pictures, and it claimed Saw would feature "the steepest freefall drop in the world".[3] The press release also revealed that "the world’s first ever horror movie-themed rollercoaster" would be marketed under the slogan "Face your Fears".[3]

Ride experience[edit]

Track layout

The ride starts with an indoor section, where riders pass Jigsaw's equipment and Billy on his tricycle. Riders then approach two dimly-lit swinging pendulum blades which appear to get closer, before a surprise hidden drop that is nearly vertical, seemingly plunging them directly into a pit of strobe-lit spikes (which are narrowly avoided). Air blasts then fire out at riders imitating the firing of syringes from loaded crossbows, which appear to miss over riders' heads. The train then enters a heartline roll, where water is sprayed at the train during the roll, and a loud scream can be heard at the same time. The train exits the warehouse and travels towards the 100-foot (30 m) vertical lift hill.

Prior to entering the lift hill, riders pass by two video screens and a digital timer counting down to zero. When it reaches zero, Billy appears onscreen and Jigsaw says "Game over". The lift hill engages the trains, which gradually accelerate as they ascend. After reaching the top, the trains dive down the 100° drop and pass under large rotating blades. Riders then enter a second inversion, an Immelmann loop, and into a tight, overbanked corner and air-time hill. The on-ride photos are taken as the cars rise to the left into a set of brakes. This is followed by a steep drop into a dive loop, and the ride ends with a banked turn into the final brake run. The train makes a turn to the right into the station to be unloaded. It was originally possible for riders to purchase a DVD of their ride experience, produced from cameras mounted on the front and back of each car, but the cameras were removed in 2012.[citation needed]

Queue[edit]

The entrance is situated at the back of Saw Plaza. The exterior queue line consists of mock razor wire fences and various props that resemble torture elements from the films. Walkie talkie recordings of panicked policemen inside the building are played for guests waiting in line. Loud ambient music is played throughout the area. The queue travels around the back of the warehouse and then into the building itself. Inside, riders walk through a dimly lit corridor, with four shotguns hanging from the ceiling. The guns 'fire' every few minutes to give a jump effect. The corridor leads up some stairs past a cage with a trap (the Rack from Saw III). Travelling up the stairs, Billy the Puppet can be seen and heard on TV monitors. Above the queue, a body is seen tangled in barbed wire (referencing the first Saw), before the queue goes into the station. In here, mannequin parts are fixed in various small devices or hanging from the walls, and misted windows flash on the wall opposite the queue.

Once finished, riders exit the cars and walk back down another stairway. The two industrial fans on the exterior of the Saw warehouse are seen on the wall by the exit path. A short video of Billy plays at the end of the stairs. More mannequin parts hang from above, as well as a severed head on a weighing scale (as seen in a poster for Saw IV). Riders then exit the building and pass the Saw Store and Photo Booth.

Incidents[edit]

Saw – The Ride under construction on 28 October 2008

On 11 March 2009, the ride was scheduled to be launched by a group of invited celebrities, including the director of Saw II, Saw III and Saw IV, Darren Lynn Bousman, who posted an account of his experience on his Facebook profile. The ride experienced a delay, a barrier shut-down and a subsequent stop, blamed by park officials on a computer programming error. An ambulance was called when one woman suffered a panic attack.[4]

Following an incident on The Smiler at Alton Towers on 2 June 2015 that resulted in its closure, Merlin Entertainment announced on 5 June 2015 that they were closing Saw – The Ride and two other roller coasters at Chessington World of Adventures for the "foreseeable future" while safety protocols and procedures are being evaluated. The ride eventually reopened on 9 July 2015.[5][6]

Gallery[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Mann, Parm (14 October 2008). "Thorpe Park announces SAW - The Ride". HEXUS.net. Retrieved 6 April 2016. 
  2. ^ "SAW - The Ride: Coming Spring 2009!". Thorpe Park. Archived from the original on 5 November 2008. Retrieved 6 April 2016. 
  3. ^ a b Teller, Brandon (16 October 2008). "Thorpe Park announces Saw: The Ride". COASTER-net.com. Archived from the original on 29 August 2014. Retrieved 6 April 2016. 
  4. ^ Barr, Nikki (13 March 2009). "Panic on world's scariest ride". Daily Express online. Retrieved 18 December 2010. 
  5. ^ "Saw reopens after Smiler incident". 
  6. ^ "Alton Towers And Other Parks Close Major Rides". BBC News. 5 June 2015. Retrieved 26 June 2015. 

External links[edit]