Florida’s tallest launch coaster, Tigris, is set to open this spring at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay after the park announced the final sections of the track have been put in place.
The 150-foot-tall tiger-themed coaster, manufactured by Baltimore-based Premier Rides, was first announced last September, taking over the spot formerly occupied by the Tanganyika Tidal Wave water ride.
“With three intensely exciting launch points, this ride is unlike anything we have in our coaster collection,” said Stewart Clark, park president of Busch Gardens Tampa Bay.
Each of the three launches will take place from the roller coaster’s station. The first will propel guests out of the station for a 50-foot climb on one side of the ride before launching again in reverse, rising up to 80 feet on the other side. The third, forward launch will shoot guests all the way to the top of the ride, which includes a slow inversion called a heartline roll. In all, the ride will only last about 60 seconds.
Andrew Schaffer, the park’s project manager, placed the ride’s thrill level somewhere between the Cobra’s Curse coaster and the 200-foot-tall SheiKra, with a 54-inch height requirement.
Media members will be invited back to the park on March 1 to see the ride vehicles. Busch Gardens will have more announcements to make that day, as Clark and Schaffer teased revealing more details on what will replace Gwazi, the wooden dueling roller coaster notorious for roughy, shaky rides that has been closed since 2015. The park had previously announced Gwazi’s successor would open sometime in 2020.