‘Iron Gwazi,’ Busch Gardens roller coaster to open next year after delays

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TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Busch Gardens Tampa Bay has announced it will open its highly-anticipated roller coaster “Iron Gwazi” next year.

The attraction will be open just in time for spring break in Tampa Bay, opening in March 2022.

Iron Gwazi will be North America’s tallest and the world’s fastest and steepest hybrid coaster, plunging riders from a 206 foot-tall peak into a 91-degree drop at a top speed of 76 miles per hour.

When 8 On Your Side spoke to engineer Andrew Schaffer at the beginning of last year during construction, he compared it to one of the park’s nine other roller coasters, SheiKra.

“So we’re a little bit taller than SheiKra,” Schaffer explained. “It’s going to be a lot faster than SheiKra. The actual track length is very similar to SheiKra though, but the experience on this attraction is very much different.”

The opening of the ride was delayed in July of last year, due to the coronavirus pandemic and was at that point, scheduled to open this year.

“Iron Gwazi has been highly anticipated by roller coaster enthusiasts around the world since we first announced this new legend,” said Neal Thurman, Busch Gardens Tampa Bay Park President. “Due to the unprecedented challenges over the last two years, Iron Gwazi was delayed, and we recognize the delay has disappointed our fans. We appreciate the patience our guests have shown.”

Busch Gardens’ sister park, SeaWorld Orlando, announced their new roller coaster “Ice Breaker” will be opening in February of next year.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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