Superman The Escape opened as world’s tallest and fastest rollercoaster. Superman The Escape was the first ride ever to exceed the 100 MPH mark. But what most people don’t know is that there were totally different plans for the ride first. The park had plans to create a ride named ‘Velocetron’. There is not much known about this plan, since the ride was going to be about the same, except for the theming. There are some pictures out there from the ride ideas such as this one.
The ride turned out to become Superman The Escape, which was made by Intamin, and was originally intended to open in 1996. Due to problems, it was never open to the public until the 1997 season. There was a preview for season pass holders in the fall of 1996. Superman The Escape was gray/white and is/was a shuttle coaster. Superman The Escape is/was 1,235 ft long, 415 ft tall, has a 328.1 ft drop, has a max. of 4.5 G’s, and reaches the speed of 100 MPH in less than 7 seconds. Superman The Escape used to reach the top of the tower in the beginning of the operations, but it slowely ended up reaching only half the tower.
Superman The Escape was the fastest rollercoaster in the world until 2001, when Dodonpa opened in Fuyi-Q-highland. Superman The Escape was world’s tallest coaster until 2003, when Top Thrill Dragster Opened in 2003. Superman (now Superman: Escape From Krypton) is still in the top 3 tallest rollercoasters in the world. In 2010, the ride closed without any given reason, and rumors had it that it would get transformed to Bizarro, but that was untrue. For the 2011 season, Superman The Escape was transformed into Superman: Escape from Krypton. The most significant change was positioning riders to face backwards so they now look towards the ground rather than the sky on the vertical track.
Superman: Escape From Krypton has been painted red, blue, and yellow, and now reaches the top of the tower most of the time. The ride ran smooth for about a year, but Superman: Escape from Krypton closed again on February 5, 2012 to prepare for the new 2012 attraction Lex Luthor: Drop of Doom. Two drop towers, also built by Intamin, were integrated into the existing sides of Superman: Escape from Krypton’s structure. The ride reopened when construction was finished on July 7, 2012. The ride’s harnasses for the outsides seats got replaced as well during this time.
At the entrance to the ride, the Superman “S” shield is imprinted and now painted onto the ground. The entrance area and queue are modeled after the Fortress of Solitude, Superman’s headquarters. The station is lit green, modeled as Krypton, the planet that is full of Kryptonite rock that can take away Superman’s powers. Inside is a crystalline-looking environment which recreates Superman’s fortress in the Arctic. If the Velocetron name had been chosen, the queue and station would have had ancient ruins and a giant laser. (as seen in the picture)
Superman: Escape From Krypton offers a unique ride which only takes about 28 seconds, with a perfect mix of G’s and a great amount of weightlessness/airtime. If you happen to be around, or have never been on it before make sure to check it out since it’s a fun ride experience, and lines are mild in the mornings and evenings.