The world’s fastest and steepest hybrid coaster being built at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay has an official name: Iron Gwazi.
The ride — which will consist of a steel coaster track built on top of some of the existing wooden structure from the shuttered Gwazi coaster — will reach speeds of 76 miles per hour and feature a 91 degree drop. It will also reach a height of 206 feet (its Federal Aviation Administration permit originally said 210 feet), making it the tallest hybrid coaster in North America. It’s also the first hybrid coaster built in Florida.
“Iron Gwazi is the evolution of a classic wooden coaster into a modern icon,” said Busch Gardens Tampa Bay park president Stewart Clark. “From the bones of the original Gwazi, a new legend rises, reaching taller heights and faster speeds, delivering the next-level thrills that our coaster fans crave and expect from Busch Gardens.”
Scheduled to open in spring 2020, Iron Gwazi will feature three inversions and 12 airtime features over 4,075 feet of track. It’s being manufactured by Idaho-based Rocky Mountain Construction, which specializes in revamping wooden coasters by placing new steel tracks on top of the old infrastructure.
Along with the new coaster, Busch Gardens will be adding a new attraction to its Adventure Island water park in 2020 called Solar Vortex. Described as “America’s first dual-tailspin water slide,” riders will hit speeds of up to 20 miles per hour in their raft.
“This thrilling family raft slide combines high-banking rotations and rapid descents, sending sliders on a swirling journey through two open tailspin features,” said Andrew Hatcher, the project’s design and engineering manager.