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Mitch Hawker 2010 poll


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^LOL Exactly! If Robb had the power to brain wash people do you really think he'd use that power on a roller coaster poll!?!? I'd pretty much never get to leave my bedroom!

This post is more truthful than truthful Piers!

 

But which ERT session would be longer....?

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Now, does any of this matter? Not really. It's just a roller coaster poll. Heck, the parks don't even promote their wins in this poll anywhere, like they do with the Golden Ticket Awards, which most enthusiasts agree is more of a popularity poll, in which foreign coasters don't really have any real chance.

 

I can recall a couple of parks who promoted Mitch's poll.

 

A great example of this is Shivering Timbers when it was new. Anyone who'd ridden it (and whole lot of people who hadn't!) would tell you that was the second coming of the coaster gods. It was the best coaster in decades, or so the story went. With insane airtime, more than any coaster freak could ever want! Was it kind of rough? Maybe, but we didn't care. Was it kind of repetitive in its design? Yeah, but damn, look at all that air! I almost flew out! The perfect example of group psychology. Now look where it ranks these days. It doesn't even make the top 10 in the Golden Ticket Awards, much less Mitch's poll, where it's dropped out of the top 20. Yeah, it's definitely gotten rougher and Cedar Fair has let it slip away. But. c'mon, it's not THAT different.

 

All the negative commentary (new negative commentary, anyway -- twister fans never liked it) I saw revolved around how it had gotten rough (and correspondingly slower). Having actually operated the ride, it's notoriously sensitive to wheel lube and track maintenance, and it can be downright mediocre if it's not being maintained properly. It feels like Mean Streak when it had a bad wheel bearing, for instance. That top from the top-5 to the top-25 is what happens when you stop maintaining a CCI. It's not a new story.

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In any case, in the interest of full disclosure, I did mention on RRC the fact that I do think that there are a small handful of people who deliberately did rank Voyage lower than they probably would have otherwise either to hurt Voyage or help other coasters or to anger the Voyage fanboys. Yes, I do think there are a few who may have done that. Is it any surprise that some people might think so when two of the very first replies to this very thread after the results were posted were basically "Ooh, those Voyage fanboys are gonna be so pissed! LOL!!!"? And let's be honest, are there really coaster enthusiasts who think that Voyage is one of the very worst coasters in the world or that it's a worse coaster than the Woodstock Express coasters? C'mon....

 

But it's also pretty obvious to me that there are a few people who did the same to El Toro, including at least two of them who also (interestingly) ranked it below the Woodstock Express coasters and one of whom ranked it in the bottom 5 of a pretty extensive list. To me, both sides are pretty equally childish. That's about the extent of my TPR conspiracy theory.

 

David - thanks for your post.

 

I'd just like to point out one thing that I see as a big difference between rationale for people rating El Toro too low or Voyage too low.

 

People who rating Voyage very low state it is because of Voyage's over aggressive nature. This is something that even some die hard lovers of Voyage will admit.

 

Some people who rate El Toro low say it is because it is not a wooden coaster. My take is that if you feel El Toro is not a wooden coaster then leave it off your ballot all together.

 

To me Phoenix is the best wooden coaster, but I'm not going to sabotage my ballot by low balling El Toro, Voyage, Boulder Dash or any other top notch coaster to help validate my opinion.

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I didn't fill out a ballot this year, but I thought Voyage was almost too rough in 2009, so I'm sure that last year, had I gotten on it, I would have found it almost unrideable. I'd rather ride Cornball express than Voyage, to be honest, and I'd rank Cornball higher than it. This doesn't have anything to do with fanboys, just my opinion and I know I'm not alone in this. It may not be the groupthink approach, but after looking through many ballots myself, I find myself agreeing with many that some think are frauds. Larry has an excellent point about El Toro, although I think a wooden coaster is one with wood track, not "One that feels like a wood coaster" I think it speaks to the poll's strength that the results are so different from the Golden Tickets, which are strongly biased and everyone knows it.

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I found voyage to be a bit of a "Jeckyll and Hyde." When I first rode it in spring 2009, I loved, and it had but one little "bump." But the difference between then and my last ride in August 2010 was night and day. I got off of Voyage thinking, "What the hell happened to this ride?" Maybe it's the difference between an early season ride and a late season ride.

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People who rating Voyage very low state it is because of Voyage's over aggressive nature. This is something that even some die hard lovers of Voyage will admit.

 

This would be me! I still absolutely love the Voyage, but it dropped from my number 1 spot because it has gotten rougher.

 

Thanks David for the post, by the way. Welcome, or welcome back!

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I forgot to vote this year, oops! But Ive never ridden Voyage so I wouldn't have helped it.

 

On another note, I really dislike when people say that 1 person decided the poll, this is sorta aimed at David but not in a bad sense.

 

To me, despite it being true that Robb and Elissa seemingly affected this ranking, they did not single handedly bring it down. How many people out there could have voted and helped Voyage (legitimately) but forgot to vote? To me, unless one single person votes, then the outcome isn't decided by one person. If the final score is 6-3, it isn't because they ranked something better it is also because other people ranked things better.

 

I don't know if that really makes any sense at all, hard to tell with Robb brain scrambling going on, but basically I just really hate it when people say one person affected a poll when more then one person voted or didn't vote.

 

If we go by the logic of Robb and Elissa deciding it by adding two losses, then why not instead go by the logic of, John Doe and Jane Doe didn't vote and they would've given it two wins so it is OBVIOUSLY their fault for not voting.

 

Chris "I'm done rambling semi-nonsensical nonsense now I promise" Damm

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If we go by the logic of Robb and Elissa deciding it by adding two losses, then why not instead go by the logic of, John Doe and Jane Doe didn't vote and they would've given it two wins so it is OBVIOUSLY their fault for not voting.

 

Chris "I'm done rambling semi-nonsensical nonsense now I promise" Damm

 

That is the essence of what he saying, he is just using Robb and Elissa as an example to prove a point. He is not pointing blame at them.

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If we go by the logic of Robb and Elissa deciding it by adding two losses, then why not instead go by the logic of, John Doe and Jane Doe didn't vote and they would've given it two wins so it is OBVIOUSLY their fault for not voting.

 

Chris "I'm done rambling semi-nonsensical nonsense now I promise" Damm

 

That is the essence of what he saying, he is just using Robb and Elissa as an example to prove a point. He is not pointing blame at them.

 

Exactly.

 

And even then, it's not even a matter of "blame". I mean there's nothing wrong with not loving (or loving) a coaster. It was just an interesting facet of how the poll is designed. Any one person and particularly two or three of them coudld change the results of even the top 10 coasters, if they happened to have voted for one of the coasters with fewer riders, or even if they voted for pairings that were very close.

 

After all, any one of the people who voted El Toro or T Express #1 could claim to be the one person who made it tied for #1.

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Yes sorry, like I said it was quite rambely. I meant no offense and your analysis was quite good, and LOOONNGG

 

I used you using them to try and prove my point lol. Next time I'll just step away from the keyboard because I think I lost my point somewhere in my ramblings. I also seemed to have missed your point David so apologies!

 

so AHEM ::cough cough:: KITTENS!!!!

 

Moving on now.

 

Chris "Will not let himself post rambling nonsense and will just post one sentence instead" Damm

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To me Phoenix is the best wooden coaster, but I'm not going to sabotage my ballot by low balling El Toro, Voyage, Boulder Dash or any other top notch coaster to help validate my opinion.

My thoughts exactly. Phoenix is my number one, but I have El Toro, Voyage, and Boulder Dash in my top 6. All fantastic coasters.

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A few random thoughts from the thread:

 

Personally, I've never quite gotten the massive appeal of Phoenix. Sure, it's a great ride, and tons of fun, but it's not quite intense enough for me to make it a top tier ride, or even a second tier ride. But it's still my #21, out of 143 currently standing woodies, which is pretty damn good.

 

Well, I guess I can intellectually understand it. It probably better than any other coaster hits that "sweet spot" between intense enough to keep someone like me happy and not too violent for people who don't like that sort of thing. And it's probably one of the most pure FUN coasters out there.

 

Was Voyage really running that much rougher later in the season? I was there for HWN, and I actually thought it was quite a bit smoother than on my last visit back in 2007. Maybe it was just because they'd smoothed out that really rough series of potholes towards the end of the return run during the left swooping turn just before the station flyby? That part had been brutal in '09, so maybe having it so much smoother made the whole thing seem smoother to me? But I wasn't the only one who at HWN had thought that it was running more smoothly than in the past. Maybe it just got rougher as the season went on, by the time of the TPR midwest trip? Or maybe the Raven train beat it up a bit more than the original one did? Most of us did think that the original Voyage train was running slightly faster and slightly more smoothly than the "Ravage" train was.

 

On another note, for those wondering why Aska ranks as highly as it does, I'll disagree with Elissa's assessment that it might be mostly nostalgia. It really WAS that good. In fact, it has been one of the most consistent performers on the chart since 2003, when it started getting enough votes to actually count, only dropping out of the top 10 once in 2007 to #11. Except for one year, when it came in at #6, it has come within 2 notches of its current rank of #9 every single year. And it's only been closed since 2006, so it's not just nostalgia driving its showing in the polls.

 

Honestly, it probably should rank even higher than it does. The problem is that it was nearly impossible to get good rides on it, unless you were going with a coaster group -- for much the same reason it's tough to get good rides on Hellcat in the Wisconsin Dells these days: the park was always DEAD. Not dead, as in a few hundred people. Dead as in 10 or 20 people max in the whole park! And that means that you could never get anything resembling a full train full of people on it, unless you went with a group. And simple physics tells you that momentum equals mass times velocity (or something like that. I took physics 25 years ago!) So with a nearly empty train, you're not getting anything like the power that the ride can deliver.

 

If I remember correctly, Nara Dreamland closed before any of the full TPR trips to Japan, right? I know that Robb and Elissa went with a few friends, but they never got more than nearly empty trains. Luckily, I went during the ECC/ACE trip. And it was INSANE. Especially in the magic row 2 with ejector lateral airtime at several spots on the ride! And we left the park before 2 PM, so it hadn't even fully warmed up yet! The only woodies I rank higher are Voyage and Tremors, both of which I've ridden around midnight during ERT sessions. Aska was almost as good at 2 in the afternoon! (Well, maybe not almost as good as Voyage at midnight!) And definitely better than any other coaster I've ridden much later in the day. It's a shame none of us will likely ever be able to find out what it would be like late at night after running with full trains all day!

 

Note that the only people who seemed to love Hellcat this year went during either the TPR midwest trip or the ACE event in the Dells -- when there were full trains. When I went on Memorial Day night, the trains were empty, and the ride was nearly boring. (Luckily, I'd been there a few years back, so I know what it CAN do.) Look at how much it's dropped in the polls, as the park has become more dead and fewer people get great rides on it outside of coaster events or trips. Hopefully, Hellcat won't meet the same fate as Aska! But at least the park has the mini-golf to bring people in.

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^I'd say that Dave hs presented his views quite reasonably.

 

^^I can see your point about Hellcat. I was on the TPR Mid-America Trip and rode it five times, each with a full train--it was excellent, and a very pleasant surprise. As for Voyage, well . . . it was giving some pretty powerful spine adjustments during that same trip. I loved it in 2009, but I didn't enjoy it much in 2010. I've heard similar stories about Viper at Six Flags Great America--great one day, wretched the next.

 

I'm hoping the Timerbliners will do good things for Voyage--at least make it less of a Jeckyll and Hyde. Well, every coaster needs a bit of Jeckyll and Hyde.

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I'm hoping the Timerbliners will do good things for Voyage--at least make it less of a Jeckyll and Hyde. Well, every coaster needs a bit of Jeckyll and Hyde.

 

I can't think of any coaster that's more Jeckyll & Hyde than Boardwalk Bullet, at least before this last round of trackwork. Some days, the circuit time from top of lift to brake would be 61 seconds and other days it would be 75 seconds. That's the difference between a ride with relentless intensity, airtime, laterals, and (relative) smoothness... and a ride that offers almost no forces other than shuffle and potholes and barely makes it back to the station.

I've mentioned it before, but the more they work to get it consistently re-rideable, the less I like it. Not that I enjoyed driving down there only to discover that it's having a bad day, but the ironing out of the problems that caused the bad days have also ironed out the parts that allowed the insane days. It's consistently "medium" now.

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Hey again Dave -

 

Your analysis of Hellcat is pretty cool. I never thought of it that way - I like it, but have only ridden it during two TPR trips and have never ridden it really empty.

 

As far as my beloved Voyage - yes, the rides were that rough on the Middle America trip. Rough enough to drop it from my #1 spot, and I am a huge Voyage fan boy.

 

David

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I always get reminded that this is just a poll when I try to explain the results or listings to a non-enthusiast friend. "Wait, what determines that a ride is the best wooden coaster in the world?" they'll ask. And of course, the answer is that nothing does. It is all a matter of personal opinion, all a matter of preference, of what somebody likes and what their personal experience led them to conclude. Mash up everyone's "midnight-ERT-better-than-sex" story and "it-was-a-million-degrees-and-I-had-just-gotten-out-of-surgery" story and "when-I-rode-it-12-years-ago-there-was-actually-a-hurricane-going-on" story as best and as fair as we know how, and we have a generally accurate consensus of what rides are more liked, and what rides are less liked among coaster enthusiasts in the year 2011.

 

The fact that anyone can take personal offense or make grotesque unfounded accusations at people, over a poll designed to foster compatibility and present consolidated opinion that coaster enthusiasts from all areas and walks of life can be apart of, is beyond me - I just don't get that.

 

I think it's awesome that someone who has ridden every wooden coaster in the world can take a poll right along with someone who has only been to their homepark every summer growing up, and I think it's a shame that there are levels of mistrust and... I don't know, almost disrespectful rivalry between people who share the same passion.

 

Every year I look forward to seeing what everyone else truthfully thinks, and it's just a bummer that people would try and sabotage the poll, or accuse others (in this case, TPR) of sabotaging the results, when it does NO GOOD TO ANYBODY to either do so or to point fingers.

 

For me, I had Voyage as number 1 still, out of around 60 or 70 or so, because in 2007 and 2008 it did things for me I never thought a coaster could do. And since I haven't ridden it since, I'm gonna vote it that way because nothing else has come close to topping it. But even then i could see it getting rougher, and I hear stories nearly every day of it just not being what it used to be. This is why Mitch Hawker has an annual poll, because the quality of rides, and their relative ranking, will change over time.

 

But if the fact that other peoples' opinions, which are in their own right entirely justified and fair, are going to bring others to outburst just because they differ, in a context where everything is completely subjective anyways, then those people need to get a different hobby. I, for one, am thankful that the honesty of those who HAVE had the opportunity to ride coasters in places I haven't IS represented here, and I look forward to the day where I can have a comparable opinion of my own through experience, regardless of if that opinion is the same as theirs or not.

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What Dave was saying about Phoenix kind of hit home for me. It's my #2 woodie but my wood count is kind of low at 30. I loved it but I didn't think it was as awesome as some people made it out to be. For right now Phoenix just seems to be saving the #2 spot for Boulder Dash, Balder, or maybe even Voyage

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I didn't fill out my ballot, but the Voyage would rank around 15 for me (out of about 75 woodies) - still the 80th percentile! I'm not much of a fan, do think its overrated, but I certainly don't hate it, either. I think its awesome how people get worked up over this shit

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The nummber 1 wooden coaster in the world just got better. It is now the FASTEST wooden coaster in the world too.

 

rcdb.com/rhr.htm?t=2

 

That doesn't make El Toro any better.

 

Someone might want to brings a JUGGS guns and re-measure some of those based on current running conditions.

Edited by larrygator
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