Ride review: Full Throttle at Six Flags Magic Mountain
Written by Robert Niles
When you've spent the better part of the past decade traveling all over riding theme park rides, it's rare for me anymore to discover a truly unique new experience on a ride. And, to be honest, I didn't expect to find one on Six Flags Magic Mountain's Full Throttle, which debuted to local reporters today.
But up at the top of that loop? A moment unlike any other on roller coasters awaits you.
As its name implies, Full Throttle doesn't take its time getting to the action, launching from the station to 70 miles per hour, up and into a 160-foot loop.
And it's in that loop that Full Throttle delivers its take-away moment — a full second (which seems like eternity) of weightless airtime, upside down, lingering at the apex of the loop. Oh, and did I mention that Full Throttle doesn't pin you down with over-the-shoulder restraints? Yep, just a lap bar — and the power of physics — keep you up there for your moment of floating in roller coaster heaven.
Fortunately, the rest of the ride won't waste your time back to the station. The loop transitions through a nifty high-speed banked turn into an Immelmann loop, which then drops you into the old monorail tunnel under the Superman plaza. From there, you launch a second time, backward, up onto the Immelmann for another moment of zero-G airtime, before gravity pulls you back into the tunnel for a third launch, a "kick in the pants" that drives you up and over the top hat that spans the upper edge of the ride's initial loop.
Another lingering moment of airtime awaits you there, again, before a quick, face-down drop back to the station. It's a sudden stop there -- the only rough moment on what is otherwise a silky-smooth, whisper-quiet ride.
Except for your and the other riders' screams, of course.
Full Throttle runs two trains with 18 riders each, so don't expect high visitor through-put on the coaster. With an active ride time a little over 60 seconds, capacity will be under 1,000 riders per hour, with loading efficiency determining how close to that figure the ride gets. As always with new coasters, get there early, or prepare to wait.
I tasted the wings earlier this year, so today I opted for the "Full Throttle Dog" at Loaded Dogs instead.
The dog, which is grilled on site next to the stand, comes dressed like a sale rack, with pastrami, bacon, chili, cheese, tomatoes and onions, and is served with waffle fries, for $10.99. Other varieties of topping-loaded hot dogs are available, along with corn dogs and topped fries. It's all a mess, of course, but tasty and fun.
Full Throttle opens to the public tomorrow, Saturday, June 22.
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