World’s first launched water coaster, Cheetah Chase, coming in 2020

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You’ve probably heard of launched roller coasters — the ones that blast you straight out of the station at incredible speeds before you ever reach a hill. You may have even been for a ride on one before, such as the new Maxx Force.

So what does that mean for a potential rider?

With Cheetah Chase, there will be no shleppin’ up a series of tall stairs on foot to reach your water raft or riding up a slow conveyor belt to the top before the thrills begin.

Instead, riders will leave the station down a very short hill — and then solely through the power of water, they’ll be launched along a flat track and then accelerated rapidly uphill. And then will people begin the downhill portion of the ride, just seconds after leaving the station.

The water-powered launch isn’t the only interesting aspect to the Cheetah Chase’s design from ProSlide Technology, a Canada-based company specializing in water rides and parks.

The design features side-by-side tracks so that two groups can race each other on their rafts. Ray Smegal, chief commercial officer with ProSlide, details how it will work:

“This thing is really unique because you’re really going to have a true race … right from the start.”

He adds: “So, they’re going to shoot across the surface and get up to about 30 feet per second, and then climb a tall, steep hill with the water. The intensity of the race and that competition is going to really start from the beginning.”

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