Friday, May 29, 2009

Speed: The Ride Pt. 1

Wouldn't the above shot have been so much better if I could capture the train in it? Yeah, I think so too. But anyway, I was in Vegas a month or so ago and Speed: The Ride at the Nascar Cafe, located within the Sahara Hotel and Casino, was the only coaster in town that I hadn't been on. Fortuitous for me, the ride had just reopened after being closed since last fall, so I made it a point to head far up to the North end of the strip and take a spin.

The coaster opened as part of a large remodeling that the Sahara did in 2000, and is a Premier Rides LIM launched coaster. Actually, it has two launches to be specific. You get your ticket from inside the Nascar Cafe (ten bucks a pop when I was there) and then wait a while. Why? Well that's also why I didn't get many good photos of the ride in action like I mentioned above as they are only sending out a train ever 15 minutes or so as it's not very busy. The entire town isn't very busy right now, to be honest.

The station is nothing too fancy, really, and as you can see above when I was there only a few people were waiting to take a ride.

Here's the train for the ride, it's just like those found on some of the older Premier Rides coasters, only this one still have the over the shoulder restraints.

I thought this piece of track sticking out of the back of the station was pretty funny looking. It dumps you right onto the side street by the resort! I know it's for maintenance purposes but it just looked goofy.

The ride initially launches you out of the station at 45 mph, and you immediately hit this highly banked turn and dive underneath the walkway in front of the resort right beside all the cars traveling down the famous Las Vegas Blvd.

I braced myself for some shoulder crunching during the turn but it really wasn't that bad! After you emerge from the tunnel under the sidewalk you fly into a vertical loop, but photos of that will have to wait for the 2nd piece of this article, hopefully tomorrow!