Jurassic World themed rollercoaster gives riders the thrill of the hunt.
One of the inverted, high-speed turns along the Velocicoaster's 4700 foot track. (All photos courtesy Universal Orlando)
By Lisa Naccarato
Universal's newest addition to the Jurassic Park area inside Islands of Adventure is taking the rollercoaster to thrilling new heights.
"That was so good, I almost wet my pants!" Allison DeForrest almost screamed as she walked through the VelociCoaster exit. A self-proclaimed adrenaline junkie, DeForrest and her teen daughters made their way from Toronto, Ontario to Orlando, Florida to experience the new ride after watching videos online.
The Velocicoaster opened in June 2021, becoming the fastest, tallest and most intense "launch" coaster in Florida. The launch feature of the ride catapults riders 155 feet into the air at extreme speeds up to 70 mph while racing alongside a Velociraptor dinosaur pack, inspired by the blockbuster “Jurassic World” films.
"I loved the whole experience, even the line-up. They really bring you into the movie experience with videos of the movie characters setting up the story, and come on, I could watch Chris Pratt for a long time without getting bored!" DeForrest added with a smile.
Included in the specially designed content created exclusively for the new ride, the film’s original cast– Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard and BD Wong –reprise their roles as Owen Grady, Claire Dearing and Dr. Henry Wu. True to their characters in the blockbuster films, Claire and Dr. Wu convey their enthusiasm in bringing guests within close proximity of Velociraptors as part of the coaster, while Owen believes otherwise.
Featuring an original story starring the Velociraptor pack – Blue, Charlie, Delta and Echo, VelociCoaster immerses guests within a genuine “Jurassic World” environment surrounded by 36,000 square feet of elaborate rockwork, a giant waterfall and lush jungle vegetation and catapults them along 4,700 feet of pulse-pounding track. The coaster dashes through the raptor paddock and hurtles at breakneck speeds, as guests are swept along a series of extreme maneuvers and high-speed launches that culminates in a spiraling 360-degree inversion, inches above the lagoon. The design of VelociCoaster allows rides to enjoy an incredibly smooth experience even while the intensity amplifies and provides a sense of weightlessness throughout the journey.
Dean Samson lives in Florida and calls himself "coaster fanatic". He's so impressed with the VelociCoaster, he's been on the ride over 2 dozen times since it opened. "This could be the best rollercoaster, I've ever been on. Launch coasters are really popular and all the big parks seem to be coming out with ones, but VelociCoaster is by far the best".
(Front entrance to cue and "Raptor Paddock")
Here's what makes the VelociCoaster so unique - unlike other rides that usually begin with the fastest or most thrilling aspect of experience, VelociCoaster's maneuvers build, getting bigger and more intense as the ride progresses. After the first launch to 55 miles per hour, guest are launched again to 70 miles per hour and inverted four times including a zero gravity, inverted stall for weightless air time. Just before the ride ends, guests are taken through a 360 degree barrel roll over water, so unexpected, it leaves riders wondering if they are the hunter or the prey.