Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Busch Gardens Williamsburg Building Pantheon at Super Speedy Pace

© Busch Gardens Williamsburg
Busch Gardens Williamsburg is assembling Pantheon, the park's new for 2020 Intamin launched coaster, faster than any major steel coaster in recent memory.  The park seems to be taking full advantage of the beautiful fall weather to get a lot of track and supports up before winter sets in.  The photos in this post were released by the park on social media, and give us a wonderful look at Pantheon's progress from about a week ago.

Up top is the ride's first inversion, which dives down the hill below grade before swooping back up to the main launch area for the coaster.  An initial launch will take place after some curvy track out of the station which will get the trains through the twisting corkscrew inversion.

© Busch Gardens Williamsburg
With the corkscrew seen in the background of this photo, the foreground is showing off the start of the spike tower that will be used in the launches.  The train will navigate the vertical tower as each launch gives it more momentum.  Only some of the supports were up in this view, and I suspected a much more robust tower to be installed next.

But then BGW Fans surprised us with this post, which shows the vertical track stretching into the sky unsupported for quite a distance.  It looks almost scary, though we've seen plenty of Intamin rides have track stretch upward with little support... but also some of them got reinforcements later.

BGW Fans also shared this money shot of the Pantheon construction from above, giving us the best look yet at the ride's progress!  It's going to be a rather pretty ride, especially considering the support and track colors.  Eventually there will be much more track filling up this field, at least two segments will be high above the ground.  You can just see the start of one of those parts, the ride's top hat, going up over on the left.