Theme Park of the Day: Disney's Animal Kingdom

Nominations Open for Best Roller Coaster Award

December 5, 2021, 9:24 PM · The next category to open for nominations in our 21st annual Theme Park Insider Awards is Best Roller Coaster.

We have plenty of fresh competitors looking to push their way onto our Top 25 list this year, including the new Jurassic World VelocoCoaster at Universal Orlando's Islands of Adventure, Jersey Devil Coaster at Six Flags Great Adventure, Stunt Pilot at Silverwood, Decepticoaster at Universal Studios Beijing, and Abyssus at Energylandia.

In addition to the new coasters, some old favorites had some work done in 2021, including Dollywood's Lightning Rod. Others, including El Toro at Six Flags Great Adventure, suffered some challenges this year. Will that affect their placement in this year's survey?

Hagrid's Magical Creature Motorbike Adventure
The defending champion - Hagrid's Magical Creature Motorbike Adventure from Universal Orlando's Islands of Adventure

All of that is up to you. Be sure to sign up for our email newsletter to get your unique link to our nomination survey. The link to the Best Roller Coaster survey will appear in the newsletter on Monday, Wednesday and Friday this week, so don't miss your chance to nominate up to 20 of your favorite roller coasters from around the world.

Up to 10 finalists that get the most nominations will appear in a front page vote later this month to determine the winner, who will be announced along with all the other Theme Park Insider Award winners on January 1, 2022. Only nominations submitted through the email links will be considered. But feel free to campaign for your favorites here in the comments.

Replies (11)

December 5, 2021 at 10:58 PM

Okay, I'm gonna campaign for a few coasters that will likely be overlooked. These aren't necessarily the best, but they should be in the conversation, especially when combining theme + thrill.

1) Hong Kong Disneyland's Big Grizzly Mountain Runaway Mine Cars: This lengthy family coaster is one of, if not the best themed narrative roller coasters in the world. It's a mine train roller coaster, with forward/backwards sections, a launch, and AA bears throughout the ride causing chaos. It also avoids exposure of poorly themed roller coaster track supports.

2) Phantasialand's Taron: This is an arguably better themed version of Velocicoaster, though their elements are pretty different.

3) Phantasialand's Fly: Themed steampunk-style launched flying coaster with a dark ride scene. It's also the longest flying coaster in the world.

December 6, 2021 at 12:12 PM

I just rode the new Velocicoaster this past weekend and I'd have to put it at the top of my list, above Hagrid. It is an amazing ride and the barrel roll over the water at the end is such a great feature.

December 6, 2021 at 3:05 PM

Just give it to Velocicoaster now. Save the time.

December 6, 2021 at 10:46 PM

I like Velocicoaster and think its a great addition to UO but it doesn't crack my top 10, I would rate pretty much every RMC i've ridden higher. Also I like Maverick (a similar ride) better as well because the launch in the middle of the ride is way more intense and unexpected. Velocicoasters launches in general I thought were pretty lackluster compared to most of the super coasters out there like Xcelerator/TTD/Kingda Ka and even many of the smaller coasters (which makes sense being at a more family oriented park, but still if we are comparing them I don't think Velocicoaster really compares in that department).

Call me sentimental but there are probably a few GCI's in there as well, The Beast at KI, Shambahla, El Toro, that are over Velocicoaster on my list.

December 7, 2021 at 11:59 AM

I will look towards Intimidator at Carowinds on this one. Everyone points to Fury 325 as the better ride, but for some reason, I just like this one more.

December 7, 2021 at 12:19 PM

James, I'm super intrigued as to why you enjoy Intimidator so much...Is there a specific row that you enjoy? Or certain elements that you think are awesome? I ask because I only rode it once (back row middle) and found it underwhelming compared to other B&M hypers/gigas/etc I've ridden (Fury, Goliath @ SFOG, Silver Star, & Hollywood Dream). So, I'm trying to figure out if I just rode it in the wrong row or something...

December 7, 2021 at 2:40 PM

I havent been on any outside of Florida so based off that i went with Mako.

December 7, 2021 at 2:40 PM

I havent been on any outside of Florida so based off that i went with Mako.

December 8, 2021 at 6:36 AM

David, I'm not sure if I can really explain why Intimidator worked so well for me. I only went to the park once 6 years ago, so I'll be darned if I can remember where I sat on the train. All I remember is that it was a wicked air-time beast that I had an absolute blast on.

December 8, 2021 at 6:53 AM

I ride Hagrid - that's #1. I ride Velocicoaster - that's #1. So very close.

Velocicoaster is the better pure coaster. Hagrid is the better overall coaster experience.

I declare a tie for first place!

December 8, 2021 at 7:47 AM

Ah okay, James! No worries. I'm glad you had so much fun on it!

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