Dominator
Previously known as Batman: Knight Flight (2000-2003)
View of Dominator from the Eiffel Tower
Kings Dominion
Park sectionInternational Street
Coordinates37°50′27″N 77°26′36″W / 37.84083°N 77.44333°W / 37.84083; -77.44333Coordinates: 37°50′27″N 77°26′36″W / 37.84083°N 77.44333°W / 37.84083; -77.44333
StatusOperating
Opening dateMay 24, 2008 (2008-05-24)
Geauga Lake
Park sectionPower City
Coordinates41°21′08″N 81°22′27″W / 41.352197°N 81.374284°W / 41.352197; -81.374284
StatusRelocated to Kings Dominion
Opening dateMay 5, 2000 (2000-05-05)
Closing dateSeptember 16, 2007 (2007-09-16)
General statistics
TypeSteel – Floorless Coaster
ManufacturerBolliger & Mabillard
DesignerWerner Stengel
ModelFloorless roller coaster
Lift/launch systemChain lift hill
Height157 ft (48 m)
Drop148 ft (45 m)
Length4,210 ft (1,280 m)
Speed65 mph (105 km/h)
Inversions5
Duration2:06
Max vertical angle57°
Capacity1600 riders per hour
G-force3.8
Height restriction54–78 in (137–198 cm)
Trains3 trains with 8 cars. Riders are arranged 4 across in a single row for a total of 32 riders per train.
Fast Lane available
Dominator at RCDB
Pictures of Dominator at RCDB

Dominator is a floorless roller coaster located at Kings Dominion amusement park in Doswell, Virginia. Built by Bolliger & Mabillard, it originally opened in 2000 as Batman: Knight Flight at Six Flags Ohio (later renamed Geauga Lake) in Aurora, Ohio. It obtained its current name when Cedar Fair purchased Geauga Lake in 2004. Following the park's permanent closure in 2007, the roller coaster was relocated to Kings Dominion where it opened in the International Street section of the park on May 24, 2008.

Dominator is the world's longest floorless coaster at 4,210 feet (1,280 m), and it has one of the tallest vertical loops in the world at 135 ft (41 m).

History

Geauga Lake era (2000–2007)

Batman: Knight Flight was unveiled at a media event held on December 9, 1999, described as the only floorless roller coaster in the Midwest and one of five like it in the world.[1][2] The ride was planned as part of a major expansion project, along with extensive changes, in an effort to rebrand Geauga Lake as Six Flags Ohio for the 2000 season. Batman: Knight Flight was constructed in the Gotham City section of the park, which is a themed area common among other Six Flags parks. The coaster opened to the public on May 5, 2000.[3]

Dominator while it was at Geauga Lake
Dominator while it was at Geauga Lake

Six Flags Ohio was later known as Six Flags Worlds of Adventure, and in March 2004, Cedar Fair acquired the theme park and restored the original Geauga Lake name. The park was stripped of Looney Tunes and DC Comics branding. In the process, Batman: Knight Flight was renamed Dominator, and all Batman branding was removed from the trains and station.[4][5] The Gotham City section of the park was also renamed to "Power City".

In August 2007, rumors of Dominator being relocated to Kings Dominion began to surface.[6] Following Cedar Fair's announcement in September 2007 that Geauga Lake's amusement park would cease to operate, leaving only the Wildwater Kingdom water park, plans were made to relocate many of its rides to other parks. Dominator's last day of operation before the move was September 16, 2007, although its destination was not specified.[6][7]

Kings Dominion era (2008–present)

On October 23, 2007, it was announced that Dominator would be moved to Kings Dominion.[8] It was rebuilt on the former site of the bus parking lot, behind Berserker, an Intamin Looping Starship. When it was relocated to Kings Dominion, it received a new paint job. The supports remained dark blue, but the track was repainted orange with the exception of the vertical loop, which remains painted yellow. It opened to the public on May 24, 2008.[9]

Ride experience

While at Geauga Lake, the ride was notable for interacting with the lake numerous times throughout the course. When it was relocated to Kings Dominion, it was built behind the Berserker, in the International Street section of the park on the former bus parking lot.[10]

Layout

A train dropping from the mid-course brake run
A train dropping from the mid-course brake run

After leaving the station, the train makes a small dip before making a 180 degree right turn to climb the 157-foot (48 m) tall lift hill. Once the train apexes the top of the lift, riders drop 148 feet (45 m) to the right at a 57 degree angle, reaching a maximum speed of 65 mph (105 km/h), into a 135-foot (41 m) tall vertical loop.[9] Following the loop, riders go through an overbanked right turn (which at Geauga Lake passed over the ride entrance) and rise up into a turnaround above the station. After the turn, riders enter a cobra roll. The train then rises uphill, makes a left turn under the lift hill, and enters the mid-course brake run. After the brakes, there is a small drop into a pair of interlocking corkscrews. Following the corkscrews, the train completes a 135-degree curve to the left that dives into a 270-degree curve along the ground, entering the final brake run.[9][11][12] One cycle of the ride lasts about 2 minutes and 6 seconds.[13]

Trains

Dominator operates with three open-air steel-and-fiberglass trains. Each train has eight cars that have four seats in a single row for a total of 32 riders per train.[9] Riders are secured by an over-the-shoulder restraint with a lap belt. In 2014, the seat color was changed from purple to black, and the restraint (previously all orange) added black to its color scheme.[14]

Track

Dominator's Loop and Cobra Roll, viewed from the parking lot
Dominator's Loop and Cobra Roll, viewed from the parking lot

The steel track is approximately 4,210 feet (1,280 m) in length, making it the longest Floorless Coaster in the world.[15] The height of the lift hill is approximately 161 feet (49 m). Dominator features one of the world's tallest vertical loops at 135 feet (41 m).[15] When the coaster first opened at Geauga Lake, it was painted with blue supports, yellow track and unpainted rails. When Dominator was relocated to Kings Dominion, the supports remained blue and the rails remained unpainted. The track was painted orange but the loop remained yellow.[11]

Theme

As Batman Knight Flight, the coaster was the star attraction of the Gotham City themed area and featured Batman theming.[11] When Cedar Fair bought the park in 2004 the name was changed and all the Batman theming had to be removed before opening day. There has been no theme for the ride while it has been owned by Cedar Fair.

Incidents

Main article: Incidents at Cedar Fair parks

On July 20, 2012, a 48-year-old woman from Pitt County, North Carolina, was found unresponsive on Dominator after its train returned to the ride's station.[16] An incident report described that she had a "seizure-like episode" after riding the roller coaster.[17] The woman was taken to a hospital, where she died. Autopsy results revealed that she had a brain aneurysm.[17] A Hanover County, Virginia, inspector found no operational problems with Dominator. The ride reopened on July 23, 2012, after it passed two safety inspections.[17]

References

  1. ^ Flaharty, Sean. "Six Flags Ohio announcement video". Retrieved October 30, 2012.
  2. ^ "Get your fill of thrills at the new Six Flags Ohio". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. June 16, 2000. Retrieved October 30, 2012.
  3. ^ Marden, Duane. "Dominator  (Geauga Lake)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved May 21, 2021.
  4. ^ Rodgers, Joel. "Dominator picture with history info". Coaster Gallery. Retrieved October 30, 2012.
  5. ^ "Dominator station at Geauga Lake". Coaster Image. 2005. Archived from the original on June 10, 2015. Retrieved November 2, 2012.
  6. ^ a b Gieszl, Eric (September 22, 2007). "Historic Geauga Lake Amusement Park Closing Forever". Ultimate Roller Coaster. Retrieved October 30, 2012.
  7. ^ Chavez, Jon (September 22, 2007). "Cedar Fair says ride's over for Geauga Lake". Toledo Blade. Retrieved October 30, 2012.
  8. ^ "B&M Floorless Roller Coaster Planned For Kings Dominion". Ultimate Roller Coaster. October 23, 2007. Retrieved October 30, 2012.
  9. ^ a b c d Marden, Duane. "Dominator  (Kings Dominion)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved October 30, 2012.
  10. ^ "Dominator at COASTER-net.com". COASTER-net.com.
  11. ^ a b c "Dominator at COASTER-net.com". COASTER-net.com. Retrieved November 2, 2012.
  12. ^ "Dominator Kings Dominion POV". Coaster Force. Retrieved October 30, 2012.
  13. ^ Slayton, Jeremy (July 23, 2012). "Kings Dominion ride remains closed after guest found unresponsive". Richmond Times Dispatch. Archived from the original on February 4, 2013. Retrieved November 2, 2012.
  14. ^ "Opening Day Photo Update".
  15. ^ a b "Dominator at Ultimate Roller Coaster". Ultimate Roller Coaster. Retrieved November 2, 2012.
  16. ^ "Pitt County woman dies after riding Virginia roller coaster". WNCT. July 26, 2012. Archived from the original on July 30, 2012. Retrieved July 27, 2012.
  17. ^ a b c "Update on woman's death after Kings Dominion rollercoaster ride". WTVR. July 26, 2012. Retrieved July 27, 2012.