Wicked is a launched steel roller coaster located at Lagoon Amusement Park in Farmington, Utah. It opened on June 1, 2007.
It is located at the front (west side) of the park and is easily seen from I-15. It has a green track with mostly silver supports, the only exception being the bright yellow supports of the launch tower.
Elements: horizontal to vertical launch, launch tower, airtime hill, Immelmann turn, heartline roll, double halfpipe, tunnel.
Wicked was designed by Dal Freeman/Lagoon Corporation, manufactured by Zierer, and fabricated by Stakotra Manufacturing. The ride is thrilling because it is launched to high speed vertically without any significant warning, has a 90-degree descent on the tower hill, pulls 4.885 gs, features a unique lap-bar restraint, and features an Immelmann turn and heartline roll. It was rumored to be named by the daughter of Dal Freeman (a designer/engineer of Magnum XL-200) as "Wicked," after the famous musical and book, or after the fact that the design looked "wicked" to her. Wicked was the first LSM (linear synchronous motor) launched roller coaster to utilize a flywheel inverter. The LSMs are not only used for launching the trains, but for also braking the trains. The energy recovered by braking the trains is used to spin the flywheel inverter where potential energy is stored and used to launch the trains.
Riders start by turning into a dark tunnel with a siren and a loud boom, before shooting straight up the 110 ft vertical launch hill at 40 MPH, cresting, and then descending vertically down the other side of the tower at speeds reaching 55 MPH. Riders then go up and over a small airtime hill with a trim brake, before going up and quickly flipping around an Immelmann turn. The track levels out before sending riders up into a heartline roll. They then descend and then quickly pass around a small, shallow turn into the trim/safety brake.
Riders descend into a double half-pipe, then being twisted to the right, left, then into a right half downward helix, then twisting to the left, then descending into a trench covered by a tunnel, before ascending and leveling out into the reduction brake run as the ride ends.
In 2014, a cart was launched but, rolled back through the tunnel (the first time in seven years). The cart was re-launched and was able to continue through the coaster.
Ride Details Edit
Wicked features single-car trains that seat two rows of four riders. It uses LSMs (Linear Synchronous Motors) to launch riders 90° straight up its 110 foot tower. It actually has two separate LSM launches, one before the tower, and one straight up it. This is immediately followed by a 90° drop straight down the other side of the tower. The ride is launched out of a tunnel. Originally there was a "boom" sound effect played when the train was launched, but it is no longer used. The ride officially has an "Industrial Factory" theme.
The ride travels through an immelmann turn and a heartline roll. The ride is slowed considerably during its safety brake run and travels through a section which consists of two compact vertical turns that simulate the half-pipe movements that snowboarders or skateboarders make. The tunnel at the end of the ride was originally planned to include a water effect as the car entered the tunnel. You can still see the hardware installed that would have provided the effect, but it has never been used.
Wicked does not have over the shoulder style restraints which are found on most launch roller coasters. The ride instead uses a unique "laptray" lapbar and leg restraint that locks the lower half of the rider's body in place. This allows the upper half to freely move and adds to the thrill of the overall experience.
Single riders and groups are separated and loaded onto the train in a way that attempts to fill most or all of the train's seats. Riders between 46' and 50' are allowed to ride using a special seat insert that effectively makes the seat smaller. These inserts can be added or removed from any of the train's seats as necessary.
On rare occasions, Wicked's trains do not make it all the way over the tower after being launched. When this happens the ride is designed so that the trains will roll backwards into the launch tunnel where they are safely stopped and re-launched after some adjustments.
Wicked was built in 2007. At the time it was the most expensive ($10 million), fastest (55 mph) and tallest (110 feet) roller coaster at Lagoon. Cannibal has since surpassed Wicked in all of these areas, though Wicked still exerts more G-forces on riders than Cannibal (4.85). The ride was built by Zierer, and was co-designed by Lagoon's head engineer Dal Freeman and was the first roller coaster of its type built. The ride was built on what used to be part of the south parking lot. It was the first steel Roller Coaster to be custom designed for Lagoon.
Manufacturing Problems Edit
After the assembly of Wicked was nearly complete, some of the weldments in a majority of the Columns, Manufactured by Stakotra Manufacturing S.r.o., were found to be inadequate. Most of the ride was then dismantled while Lagoon and Intermountain Lift fixed the Problems, leading to a several month delay in the ride's opening.