This Wednesday just gone the Thompson family kindly invited the press and media to Blackpool Pleasure Beach for the launch of their new £16.5 million double launched roller coaster Icon!
I want to start of and just say this is without a doubt the best media event I have ever been too in all the years I've been dong this. It was phenomenally well organised, we were all looked after to the highest standard and given all the information you could possibly need. I genuinely can't fault the park in any way for this event and think they should be just as proud of how they presented this event as the ride itself.
But not on to the ride itself as I know thats what your all waiting to hear about. To put it in simple terms this ride is easily now in the top 3 rides in the country. Im known for being a very cynical person these days and don't really expect to be impressed, but this ride blew me away repeatedly. The park didn't look at their spacial restraints as an issue they looked at them as a challenge. From the dreams of Amanda Thompson conjuring up the idea of the cherry blossom falling in the wind, to Nick Thompsons days of pacing the park to find the perfect area to put the ride, combine with Mack Rides engineering and creativity you get what can only be called Icon.
The ride wouldn't have been possible if not for modern technology. Due to the nature of the parks rides and their age they didn't have a full set of engineering documents to go by to help with the design of the ride, so Mack did the next best thing they did and 3D easily half the park so they could work with the most accurate documents. This in itself has allowed them to twist and bend the ride so beautifully in the park its like the park has been moulded for the ride and not the other way round.
I could keep going on and on about the engineering behind the ride and the ride itself but I think the honest truth is the pictures will tell a much better story than I can so here we go.
As soon as you arrive in Blackpool you will be sure to know all about Icon.
Here is our first look (from a distance) at Icon!
All checked in and ready to go.
Everyone loved some good nerdy facts.
How many of these do you find surprising or interesting?
7 years of work went into Icon!
The Thompson and Mack families sit down with park and coaster club representatives for a Q&A about Icon.
After which we were taken to the ride for our first close up look at the ride.
Featuring live music!
Everyone is ready to ride,
but not before the Thompson and Mack family cut the ribbon to officially open Icon!
Do you dare to ride?
Its sleek, its modern but how will it ride?
As you enter the station the mood changes and the tension build.
The music is blaring and building that tension because before you know it.
You are launching your way into a phenomenal experience.
Which is not only smooth and quiet....
but generates serious air time which just increases as the ride warms up.
The first half of the ride is great in itself but then you hit the second launch and it just keeps going!
The ride is also so photogenic! In the sun it just looked so good!
While the ride doesn't have a huge theme per say it has some beautiful touches like these posts around the ride area with the names of people who have helped the ride to become a reality on.
As mentioned earlier the park was 3D scanned to make the ride happen. An added bonus of this you can buy that scan with Icon on it in the shop now! Thats what you call unique merchandise!
Pleasure Beach is known for its "Iconic" photo opportunities. This ride has now created so many new ones.
An fantastic old classic in the background and a new fantastic attraction in the front!
For those who know me the last time you probably saw me this happy on a ride was I think Frozen Ever After!
GO RIDE ICON NOW! Just do it, you won't be disappointed.
I don't want to keep going on about how great I think this ride is. I will just say plain and simple head down to the park and experience it for yourself. I think this now takes the crown for the best Mack Launched coaster to date and id love to think you would too. Comment below and tell me what you think of the ride, if you want to go on it.
With all this being said I cant leave any trip to Blackpool without an aftermath pic of Valhalla now can I.