S&S built three air-launched coasters between 1999 and 2001: Hypersonic, Dodonpa, and Powder Keg. Hypersonic was demolished in early 2008, so the future of air-launched coasters was unclear at best. I looked forward to riding more, but it would be another ten years until S & S Power built their fourth air-launched coaster. Ring Racer was built in Germany in 2009, but it suffered with technical problems, including an explosion of the pneumatic system in 2009. After sitting for years, it finally opened in late October 2013. Four days later, the ride closed, and it has been closed ever since. It is the largest and most expensive roller coaster failure that I have ever seen.
With the problems Ring Racer experienced, I thought that air-launched coasters were done, yet S & S recently started building more. Extreme Rusher opened in Bejing, China in 2011 at Happy Valley. In 2012, Bullet Coaster, another air-launched ride, opened at a different Happy Valley park in Guangdong, China. OCT Thrust SSC1000 opened in 2014 at yet another Happy Valley park in Hubei, China.
©2017 by Joel A. Rogers