Jurassic World VelociCoaster officially opens June 10, but this week Universal offered limited previews for select annual passholders. TouringPlans sent our own intrepid raptor wranglers, Len “Life Finds a Way” Testa and Ivonne “Hold Onto Your Butts” Ramos, to experience the new attraction and provide their first impressions.
VelociCoaster is the newest rollercoaster added to Islands of Adventure, replacing the defunct Triceratops Encounter attraction. The attraction’s entrance is along the lagoon’s waterfront. Follow the signage once inside Jurassic Park to the attraction.
Guests are among the first riders on a new, first-of-its-kind attraction inside a velociraptor pen. In the queue, Dr. Henry Wu (played by BD Wong) guides us through the raptor genetic breeding process. Operations manager Claire Dearing (Bryce Dallas Howard) reassures us the rollercoaster through the paddock is perfectly safe – raptor trainer Owen Grady (Chris Pratt) is less convinced.
Ivonne enjoyed the queue and some of the original Jurassic Park callbacks, “I loved seeing all the references to the movies in the queue. but my favorite part was seeing Mr. DNA again!”
A feature unique to the VelociCoaster queue fixes many of the complaints of other Universal thrill coasters: lockers. Instead of storing items prior to entering the queue, guests will store their loose items in double-sided lockers before boarding. Once finished with their rides, guests approach the lockers from the opposite side to retrieve their items (see diagram below). Len thinks this should become the standard design for all ride lockers going forward.
Before boarding, guests must pass through metal detectors to ride. The last thing you want is your keys or cell phone to fall into the raptor pen or Islands of Adventure lagoon.
The ride experience is best described as a coaster of two halves: the first is a twisty half similar to Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure, but with inversions, and the second half is full of speed and daring maneuvers over the water, like The Incredible Hulk Coaster.
Riders – including Len and Ivonne – report the roller coaster is intense, yet smooth – the intensity comes from the airtime and crazy maneuvers and not the roughness of the track. Ivonne adds, “The ride is smooth and having only a lap bar makes it a comfortable one as well. It’s an intense coaster that is all about air time and speed and the two launches are fantastic.”
Thank you from the TouringPlans team to Universal for inviting us to get up close and personal with VelociCoaster. It is an amazing coaster and we hope coaster fans and thrill-seekers will be able to ride it real soon. We know we want to ride it again! Congratulations for a fantastic preview!
Looking forward to this apex predator of rollercoasters? Reach out to our professional team at TouringPlans Travel Agency for a free quote. If you decide to book with us you will get a free year subscription to TouringPlans.com!
Have you ridden VelociCoaster and have VelociThoughts? Leave them in the comments below!