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Robert Niles

SeaWorld San Diego making progress toward Manta opening in May

Published: January 17, 2012 at 11:31 PM

Looking forward to the west coast version of Manta, at SeaWorld San Diego?

Did you know that there was going to be a west coast version of Manta, at SeaWorld San Diego?

You can't miss that news now if you visit the San Diego park - SeaWorld's placed one of the new Manta coaster trains at the park entrance, to promote the upcoming ride.

Manta coaster car

San Diego's Manta will be a sit-down coaster from Mack Rides, a ground-hugging design with a top speed of 43 miles per hour and a maximum drop of just 54 feet (the park has to work within height restrictions imposed by the California Coastal Commission). So riders can expect a very difference experience from the original Manta, a Bolliger & Mabillard Flying Coaster at SeaWorld Orlando which won the Theme Park Insider Award for Best New Attraction in 2009.

SeaWorld spokesperson Dave Koontz told me today that over half the track has been installed on San Diego's Manta, and construction will begin next week on the show building that will house the ride's launch. Ride testing will begin in April in advance of the scheduled May 26 opening.

One more, though unrelated, new listing on the site: Katsura Grill, the new counter service restaurant that replaced the Yakitori House in the Japan pavilion at Epcot, opened officially today. Follow the link and rate away.

Replies (2)

Brad Schuster

Published: January 18, 2012 at 4:01 PM

When I first heard about this, I was really excited as I had the chance to go to Sea World Florida last summer and ride that version. It was a really great ride with a fantastic design where you swoop past waterfalls and experience really clever inversions that make you feel like you are flying. It was right up there with magic mountian's Tatsu as one of the best flying coasters I have been on. From the pictures I have seen, this is just a sit down borderline kiddy coaster that wont even include an inversion. I know its tough to make anything that thrilling when you have such a hieght restriction and it is cool that this park is finally getting a real coaster, but I wish they wouldnt have called this 'Manta' because, outside of the theme, it really has nothing to do with its name sake.
I think a better idea would have been to make a west coast 'Kraken' but with a twist. Keep it as a floorless coaster but instead of a big first drop, have it launch out of the station into a series of inversions and small drops. That way you would keep the thrill despite the hieght restriction. A foorless launch coaster would be unique and, I think, a big draw.
Manny Barron

Published: January 18, 2012 at 10:48 PM

This Manta ride is going to be awesome. I was thinking that this ride was going to open sometime in June for some reason, but a May opening sounds great. So we know Transformers for late May and now Manta as well. When will Disney announce their Carsland opening date?

Anyway this Manta ride will not only be a fun ride experience but it's also going to be one of the best looking area in the park.

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