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Mitch Hawker's 2007 Steel Coaster Poll Results


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Just wondering, what is the highest ranked Vekoma coaster? I see a lot of Intamins, B&M's, & Arrows, but where do the Vekomas come in?

Big Thunder Mountain, Paris edition, at 74. Then Expedition Everest at 82. Then some more Disney ones. The first non-Disney (read: "not boosted by impeccable theming") is Stunt Fall at 130.

 

Wow, Eagle Fortress seems to be the George Mason of this year's poll. That's awesome. Personally, I'm excited to see Maverick up so high already.

 

But boy, I need to get around to more parks!

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I found an aerial picture of Eagle's Fortress on Flickr, but part of the ride was cut off. I did my best to restore the complete layout based on the POV YouTube video.

eagle.jpg.a4703858d964d91dfda39fa5dc42af45.jpg

My best guess at the Eagle's Fortress layout.

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It's Eagle Fortress...not Eagle's Nest.

 

Good overhead view anyway. It's amazing that the layout looks very bland, but when you're actually on it it's a whole different feeling.

 

Thanks. The YouTube video I was watching called it Eagle's Nest, but I guess that was a mistranslation.

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Have you actually been on Dodonpa? The launch and airtime hill were definitely the most insane 1-2 punch on a roller coaster that I have experienced, so I can see why people voted it as #76.

 

Joey, I haven't (I thought I said that?) ridden Dodonpa, but from every report I read it was extremely rough and uncomfortable.

 

Just adding my two cents on Dodonpa (generally I don't post in these threads because I don't take part in the polls): I agree with Joey on the launch and hill being an amazing 1-2 punch. Seriously somewhat insane and I really think that launch kinda pushes the limits, though somehow it didn't mess me up as much as I had thought (hoped? ) it might.

 

However, cresting the top of the tophat involves one of the worst blows to the head I've ever experienced on a coaster. The onride photo was hysterical, we were all either clutching our heads or else just had horrific looks of horror and pain on our faces. Thank God it's only that height!!

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Call me a "fanboy" or whatever, but I still think MF is the best coaster in the country. No, I'm not from Ohio. I've been on most of the top 10 from the more legitimate polls.

 

I think people just like different things in coaster. Me? I like speed, fast corners, and traditional hyper/giga type layouts, of which MF sets the standard.

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^ Well that is very respectable. I would not call you a fanboy at all. You at least give a reason as to why you like the ride. Most of the actually fanboys that I come across just give a stupid response.

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I've been on most of the top 10 from the more legitimate polls.

 

I'm sorry, but that statement alone has "fanboy" written all over it!!

 

 

I would like you to cite, just ONE, poll that is "more legitimate" than Mitch Hawker's polls. (Wood or Steel)

 

Name ONE poll that is HALF as "legitimate" as Mitch's is.

 

In fact, name just ONE poll out there that is NOT set up like a rigged election.

 

 

Discovery Channel, The Learning Channel, Time Magazine, NY times, etc...

 

All of the above entities have their own "coaster polls". Each one is NOT a "poll" but a popularity contest, where ANYONE can vote as often as they like.

 

An example of ALL the above methods would be something like this:

 

An election was just held. A poll was taken upon exit. 5 votes were cast for one candidate, 15 for the other. Yet, only 10 people voted.

 

How did this happen?

 

Five people voted once for one candidate, and five people voted 3 times each for the other, because it IS allowed.

 

 

Even the highly revered (by parks, anyway) "Golden Ticket Awards" has it's problems. Granted, they generally send their ballots to people who are more well known travelers, but it does have problems with accuracy.

 

For (an exaggerated) example: Ten enthusiasts have been to Williams Grove. Only one of them has been to Cedar Point. So, 9 people vote WG as their #1 park. The last votes CP as best, WG as #2.. By that voting method, (10 pts for 1st, 9 pts for 2nd, etc...) you have:

 

Williams Grove 99 points (9 votes at #1, 1 vote at #2)

Cedar Point 10 points (1 vote at #1)

 

So, obviously, by this tabulation method, Williams Grove is a much better park! (Sarcasm intended)

 

 

All of the "more legitimate polls" have absolutely NOTHING "legitimate" about them. They are nothing more than popularity contests that allow corrupt voting practices.

 

 

In Mitch's polls, Mitch tries to ensure that there are NO people submitting more than one ballot. Sure, I would imagine some get through, but he does an incredible job at weeding those things out (via IP addresses etc...)

 

Every person's vote is tabulated, and then ONLY the "head-to-head" rankings of rides ridden, by each individual voter, are compared. Hardly a popularity contest like the others I mentioned.

 

All of the info of how the info is gathered and processed can be found on his web page:

 

Best Roller Coaster Poll

 

So you might want to rethink your "opinion" about "more legitimate" coaster polls.

 

 

JJ

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Thank you. I believe that Mitch Hawker's poll is the most accurate out there, but is not optimal. If he split the ride clones up, then it would be more accurate; however, accepted policy is to rate your favorite SLC (to give one example) and disregard all the other ones.

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I would like you to cite, just ONE, poll that is "more legitimate" than Mitch Hawker's polls. (Wood or Steel)

 

Name ONE poll that is HALF as "legitimate" as Mitch's is.

 

In fact, name just ONE poll out there that is NOT set up like a rigged election.

 

Each one is NOT a "poll" but a popularity contest, where ANYONE can vote as often as they like.

Yeah, I agree the polls are much more thrown off overall, but Aliston seemed to only be talking about the top ten coasters from the polls. The top ten (at least with the Golden Tickets) is not as rigged as people make it seem. Here's what I mean...

 

Top 10 in Golden Tix (and their rank in Hawker)

1. Superman: ROS (1), 0 different from Hawker

2. Millennium Force (4), +2 from Hawker

3. Nitro (9), +6 from Hawker

4. Apollo’s Chariot (12), +8

5. Magnum XL-200 (46), +41

6. Expedition GeForce (2), -4

7. Phantom’s Revenge (16), +9

8. Goliath—SFOG (7), -1

9. Top Thrill Dragster (23), +14

10. Montu (15), +5

 

Top Ten in Hawker’s which are NOT in Golden Tix top 10 (and their rank in Golden Tix)

3. Eagle Fortress (Not Ranked in GT)

5. Katun (50), +45 from GT

6. Nemesis (14), +8

8. Goliath—Walibi (29), +21

10. Maverick (13), +3

 

The only large discrepancies in the two top ten lists are the Golden Tickets overhyping Magnum and (to an extent) Top Thrill, and overlooking Eagle Fortress, Katun, and Walibi’s Goliath. All the other rides are under 10 ranks' difference between the 2 polls, which I find to be an acceptable standard deviation.

 

Before you think I'm a Golden Tix fanboy, I will gladly admit that as the lists go on, Golden Tix seem more and more "rigged". But in terms of the Top Ten Coasters (which Aliston was talking about), they are reasonably consistent.

 

With that said, I understand and completely agree with your explanations of how some of the polls fall short in objectivity. I'm NOT disagreeing with you, just trying to point out something which seems to have been overlooked by people.

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I'm sorta suprised to see Eagle Fortress place so high. I knew that enthusiasts loved it, but I didn't realize anyone thought it was top 10 caliber. I'm also sorta suprised that Maverick didn't place higher despite how it well recieved it was with enthusiasts.

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The only large discrepancies in the two top ten lists are the Golden Tickets overhyping Magnum and (to an extent) Top Thrill, and overlooking Eagle Fortress, Katun, and Walibi’s Goliath. All the other rides are under 10 ranks' difference between the 2 polls, which I find to be an acceptable standard deviation.

 

Before you think I'm a Golden Tix fanboy, I will gladly admit that as the lists go on, Golden Tix seem more and more "rigged". But in terms of the Top Ten Coasters (which Aliston was talking about), they are reasonably consistent.

 

I would say the difference is pretty big. You listed five rides in the top ten in the Hawker poll, thats not in the top ten in GTA. Five rides is 50% of the a top ten list Also four of them is European or Asian. If you take a look a the GTA only one ride on that top ten isn't from North America. And that ride is four places farther down than on the Hawker poll, where it is has placed in the top two for the last seven years in a row! The rest of the GTA is made out of great rides, but in the Hawker poll they typically place out between 10-20.

 

I would definitively say its a pretty big difference in those polls! If you take the top 50 in to account the difference is enormous. I compared the top 50 from both polls, and while the GTA's had 8 international rides the Hawker poll had 18! That says a lot imo. The GTA's isn't too bad on North American coasters (except for all CP coasters being way higher than in most polls), but when you take international coasters into count it really shows how biased this poll is.

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Golden Tix vs Mitch's Poll

 

Mitch's poll is sent out to enthusiasts. These include seasoned travelers who have been on hundreds of coasters, average joes who occasionally get out to places other than their home park, and newbies who don't have enough credits to have a top ten list, but who love their coasters just as much as anyone else. This makes for a nice cross-section of folks who (mostly) vote for the rides that they like to ride. Mitch's tabulation system doesn't favor those rides who get more votes than other rides (hence Eagle's Fortress at #3).

 

Golden Tix ballots are sent mainly to subscribers and former subscribers of Amusement Today. Who subscribes to this? Die-hard coaster buffs and people who are in the industry. Industry folks are probably going to take more than just "how much fun is it" when they rank a ride. Take Magnum, for instance. Yes, it's fun, but is it REALLY still a top 10 ride? In the industry, absolutely. That coaster broke the 200ft barrier, something that was something of a pipe dream in the business. It was a huge, tubular rail steelie WITHOUT loops... another shocker for the time. Shoulder bars? Hell no, it was designed specifically to create woodie-style airtime. Another ground-breaking idea for the time. It put Cedar Point on the map for the WORLD, not just the midwest. It was almost totally responsible for the industry pushing the envelope on coasters in the years that followed. Everyone wanted something to top Magnum. So... ask someone in the industry and they will say YEAH, Magnum is a top 10 coaster, and it always will be... that coaster changed the rules.

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^^Ok, we just have differing opinions on what is an acceptable rank difference between the list to be "consistent", and how we focused on the ranks. I focused on how much each coaster changed in rank from poll to poll. You looked at them more as "in top 10" and "out of top 10". My system gave a little more lenience to the ranks. Like Maverick, for example, was 10 in Hawker and 13 in GT. As I saw it, it was only 3 spots different. As you saw it, it was in the top 10, then out of the top 10. Your method makes it seem more separated. Which is perfectly fine. I just offered one (probably the less looked at) interpretation of the ranks. And as I mentioned originally and you reiterated, foreign coasters are helplessly overlooked in GT (4 US polling divisions and 1 for the rest of the world...?!)

 

^Great explanations of the distinctions of the polls. I knew the differences and how only select people got the GT, but the Magnum example is a great illustration. Made me think of the "best movie" lists, too. AFI's list is chalk-full of theatrical classics (6 of the top ten were made before 1958, and 8 before '72) because of their impact in the industry. Most personal top movie lists would have more recent ones listed because they are fun to watch (Gladiator, Titanic, Star Wars, etc are popular list-toppers). I guess it parallels coasters pretty well (even to the point of foreign films being drastically overlooked like coasters).

 

Good thing the beauty of these polls are that they are subjective and open to debate.

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