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Best Ride in America Tournament: Round one, day two

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Published: March 17, 2008 at 8:44 PM

Before I get to the match-ups, yesterday I meant to thank TPI reader Tim Strickland for coming up with the idea for this tournament. But I forgot, so I'm doing that today. Thanks, Tim.

Yesterday's opening day match-ups produced the tournament's first stunning upset, as Disneyland's Mr. Toad's Wild Ride eliminated Six Flags Magic Mountain's Tatsu. Behold the power of Disney fans online. Other rides to advance were The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man, Maverick and Journey to Atlantis.

In today's contests, we have two more higher-seeded roller coasters facing off with Disney attractions, Alpengeist vs. Star Tours and Millennium Force vs. Roger Rabbit's Car-Toon Spin. Will one of the Disney rides pull another upset?

Our next two contests feature more balanced match-ups. First, it's Six Flags coaster versus Busch coaster as Goliath takes on Montu.

Finally, we match Disney vs. Disney, as the original Soarin' Over California takes on Finding Nemo: Submarine Voyage

Debate your picks in the comments!

Readers' Opinions

From Robert Niles on March 17, 2008 at 9:38 PM
Looks like Alpengeist and Star Tours is our battle today. Will the BGE fans show up this time? Or is another BGE coaster going down?
From Barbara Boyer on March 18, 2008 at 3:00 AM
No question about it, Alpengeist is one of the best coasters I've ever enjoyed! Go BGE!
From Mike K on March 18, 2008 at 3:25 AM
Alpengeist is definitely the better attraction. CP fans will be out in force again today backing Millennium Force. The days of Disney Domination are over!
From Danny Melillo on March 18, 2008 at 4:36 AM
No way Star Tours beats Alpie, it's one of the best coasters on the East.
From Missy Renee on March 18, 2008 at 5:08 AM
Another Alpengeist supporter here...I love that dip under the bridge towards the end of the ride! Bring on the votes, BGE fans.
From David Kirby on March 18, 2008 at 6:01 AM
I like Star Tours but there is absolutely no way that a 20 year old motion simulator is better than Alpengeist.
From Todd Houts on March 18, 2008 at 6:49 AM
It might be a good idea in the future match-ups to list the park name when a chain (like six flags) has several different coasters with the same name.

Today's match-up has Six Flags "Goliath" - but there are three different coasters named Goliath at Six Flags Parks - Magic Mountain, Georgia and La Ronde. (And the ride at La Ronde is a massive steel, all-air, out and back. I understand the Georgia one is similar but a different layout.)

I was able to determine this one was Magic Mountain due to the link provided in the description, but those less savvy may assume it is the Goliath in the Six Flags nearest them. Just a thought.

BTW, I'm absolutely loving this tournament. A nice perk to begin each day. Thanks for putting it together, Robert.

From brian lochridge on March 18, 2008 at 7:28 AM
Lets go Star Tours, this really shows how much of a Giant Disney is in this industry. Even if Star Tours doesn't win the fact that it's close says alot.
From Tim Strickland on March 18, 2008 at 8:04 AM
Just an idea, I wonder if any particular BGE downers are logging off of their profile and opposing the BGE coasters numerous times. Yesterday was great and these are some great matchups as well. I think the most fair battle is Goliath vs Montu. I like two great coasters facing off the best. Also, Robert no thanks needed, just being a part of this tournament is awesome. Great job with the setup. Are the rides on top the higher seeded? One more quick question are the rides that show up on the same day going to be the quarterfinals? Basically what I am asking is will Spiderman and Toad face each other in the next round?
From LG Mills on March 18, 2008 at 8:49 AM
Alpengeist, FTW. And no way the Car-Toon Spin can top the Millenium Force, even though both are great rides.
From Robert Niles on March 18, 2008 at 9:33 AM
FYI - Starting tomorrow, I will put the park and seeding number on the rides. I thought that folks could click through to see which park the ride was from, but, you're right, it's nicer to see that on the page, too.

FWIW, Spidey gets the Soarin'-Nemo winner in the next round.

By the way, in cases where multiple versions of the same ride ended up in the top 64 (such as Splash Mountain, Haunted Mansion, etc.), I selected only the highest rated one for the tournament. That's why Disneyland's Pirates is in and the other Pirates are not. That also allowed some lower-rated rides into the tournament, with one surprising result already (i.e. Toad).

From Robert OGrosky on March 18, 2008 at 10:08 AM
Star Tours IMHO is a medicore attraction and should have been replaced by now, so go Alpie!!!!!

Also go Montu which IMHO is better than any Goliath coaster!!

From Scottland Jacobson on March 18, 2008 at 11:50 AM
Star Tours vs. Alpengeist? Toad is a classic that has stood the test of time in its (mostly) original version. Star Tours came out in the 80's and is waaaaaay outdated. Alpengeist is one of the best inverted floorless coasters. Come on Alpengeist fans! Get that coaster to stay in the race.

And Montu vs. Goliath? You're going to make me choose??? ...decisions...decisions...decisions...

From Larry Zimmerman on March 18, 2008 at 1:17 PM
If you've ridden one suspended coaster, you've ridden them all -- but the trench run beats a couple of inversions every time. Now, mix the trench run theming with a B&M inverted...*then* you'll have my attention.

Millennium Force - no contest. Did you know there are TWO tunnels?

Montu, 'cause it never snows there, and...

Soarin' should be retitled "Borin' Over California."

From Joshua Counsil on March 18, 2008 at 1:52 PM
"Borin' Over California"?

I will be shocked if Soarin' loses to Nemo. It's a sweet ride, whereas Nemo ... well, came short, comparatively.

From Robert Niles on March 18, 2008 at 3:30 PM
"Borin' Over California" - best line of the day. I continue to fail to see the appeal of that attraction. A camera trapped in the sky, too far from the action to see any human emotion. Nondescript music that fails to elicit any interesting mood. And... the finale, the supposed emotional highlight... is a scene from *another* theme park.

Soarin' over the CA could have been, and should have been, so much more. Eh.

From Deidre Dennis on March 18, 2008 at 4:48 PM
I agree about Soarin'... the first time I rode it, thought it was cool. But NEMO? OH MY GOD... I was furious after we waited in line like all those other fools for all that time to end up completely disappointed. I should have known by the looks on the faces of all the people getting out of the subs. Don't know what it was like before it became NEMO but it is so not worth the wait.
From Justin Spisto on March 18, 2008 at 4:53 PM
Let's Go Alpie! Comon Busch Fans get out there support Alpie and Montu. It dosen't look like Six Flags is gonna do good.At least until El Toro and Nirto show up lol.
From Derek Potter on March 18, 2008 at 4:57 PM
Doesn't look like there will be an upset this time. Were Soarin over California and Nemo the 63rd and 64 seeds?
From Shannon Beauchemin on March 18, 2008 at 5:21 PM
Star Tours is so lame. I am looking forward to the new update though. Soarin' is one of the best.
From James Rao on March 18, 2008 at 7:10 PM
I like Soarin' (at least I like the one in Florida - I have not been on the one in CA). It is a fun, breezy, mildly thrilling joyride. I think you have to remember that the audience at Disney theme parks, in general, is the whole family, not just teens, or adults, or kids. Disney wants everyone riding together in happy, 60's style harmony. I kind of like that about Disney. There are not too may A-List attractions that my entire family can enjoy at the same time, and not too many A-list parks that do such a great job of catering to the family. I say kudos to Disney for a job well done! They got my vote!! =)
From Robert Niles on March 18, 2008 at 7:15 PM
Neglected to link this earlier, but the Busch Gardens Europe fans have rallied. Who's next?
From Joshua Counsil on March 19, 2008 at 11:14 AM
Me and my buddies are thrill-seekers. When we did an Orlando trip last year, I was hard-pressed to get them to ride anything without high-velocity thrills, or watch anything without explosions.

But they were all blown away by Soarin'. Eight 20+ college students thought it was the best thing at Epcot, and one of the better experiences of the trip. We went on the ride in a bad mood, and came out energized.

Star Bores, on the other hand, disappointed to the nth degree. Come on, Lucas, pump some money into that thing.

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