Florida's tallest launch coaster opens at Busch Gardens Tampa

April 18, 2019, 12:46 PM · Busch Gardens Tampa this morning showed off its new roller coaster to the media — Tigris. Standing 150 feet above the park, the triple-launched Premier Rides model is now Florida's tallest launch coaster.

I wasn't at the park for this morning's event, but I invite you to check out our on-site reviews of SeaWorld's two previous installations of this Sky Rocket II model: the original installation of Tempesto at Busch Gardens Williamsburg, by Russell Meyer, and my review of Electric Eel last year at SeaWorld San Diego.

We start with a forward launch out of the station, stalling on the track as gravity drops us back into the station, through which the ride accelerates us with a faster, backward launch. That one drives us up higher, but we stall again for gravity to pull us again into the station, where a third launch finally gets us up to that 62 mph top speed, propelling us all the way to the top of the 150-foot structure.

A relatively slow inline twist follows... before gravity pulls us down and into the ride's final element, a non-inverting loop. Then we drop back into the station, overshooting it by just a bit, before gravity gently rolls us backward to unload.

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Replies (5)

April 18, 2019 at 1:20 PM

It soft opened on Tuesday, and pretty much ran all day, but not so much yesterday. Today being media day would have been a bust for the visitors (I guess ?) and tomorrows official opening sees the weather forecast call for 100% rain, so we'll see how it all goes.

The BGT blogs were indicating the riders were being offered fanny packs at the entrance to store their loose items in. Ride the ride, then hand them back. Seems like a great idea to me.

I'm going to a Tigris VIP event next Thursday evening, so I'll see what it's all about then.

April 18, 2019 at 1:34 PM

Does anyone else struggle with parks announcing "record-breaking!" coasters that are simply templates of other coasters? Seems like cheating. Harumph!

April 18, 2019 at 1:38 PM

@Makorider - BGW started using fanny packs about halfway through Tempesto's first season, and they continue to use them today. For guests with smaller items that can fit into the fanny pack instead of placing in a costly locker, it's a great solution. Considering how tight the rows are, it expedites the loading and unloading of the coaster when guests don't have to walk across to the unload side of the platform for their sunglasses or other small loose articles.

April 18, 2019 at 3:42 PM

Congrats to SeaWorld Entertainment for getting their Tigris at Busch Gardens Tampa up and open:)

April 18, 2019 at 4:49 PM

I'd need a sizeable sick bag not a fanny pack. I feel queasy watching the POV. For those who like coasters this is a cracking addition with minimal footprint.

SeaWorld Entertainment are literally on a roll. Chapeau!

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