Object Lesson: Top Thrill 2

A closer look at Cedar Point鈥檚 newest addition.
Rendering courtesy of Cedar Point

***Editor鈥檚 note: Top Thrill 2 is currently under an extended closure while the ride鈥檚 manufacturer makes mechanical modifications. Check for updates.听

Last summer, Cedar Point unveiled plans for Top Thrill 2, its newest stomach-churning ride for the summer of 2024, and 黑料网 Detroit readers were excited. The proof? Our web story about the news was one of our top stories of last year.

Built on the bones of the former Top Thrill Dragster, Top Thrill 2 is set to break world records as the tallest and fastest triple-launch strata (at least 400-foot-tall) coaster.

Here, find details on how the park鈥檚 18th roller coaster came to be and what to expect if you plan on tackling it during your next trip to the second oldest amusement park in North America, which opened for the season on May 4 and kicks into summer hours (10 a.m.-10 p.m. daily) on June 14.

What is it?

Top Thrill 2 uses the massive tower of Top Thrill Dragster, but the ride has been heavily modified by the Italian design and manufacturing company to create a totally new experience.

Newly open for the 2024 season, Top Thrill 2 is the world鈥檚 only dual-tower strata coaster as well as the world鈥檚 tallest and fastest triple-launch roller coaster, standing at 420 feet and reaching a top speed of 120 mph.

What does it do?

Top Thrill 2 comes equipped with three aerodynamically designed five-car trains that keep riders in place with over-the-shoulder lap bars.

A state-of-the-art linear synchronous motor system uses electromagnetic propulsion to launch each train from 0 to 74 mph up the front tower, but instead of cresting the top hat on the first launch, riders experience a 鈥渞ollback鈥 and feeling of weightlessness as they fall backward into a second 101 mph launch that takes them up a new 90-degree, 420-foot back tower, where they look down at the lift of the 145-foot Rougarou and the top of the 240-foot Power Tower.

Riders experience weightlessness again as they fall front-facing down into the third, final, and fastest launch, which catapults riders up and over the front tower, through a 270-degree spiral, and across the finish line.

The ride is a total of two minutes long. Guests must be 52 inches tall to ride. Those who do not wish to ride can watch the action from grandstands located near the ride鈥檚 entrance pavilion.

What happened to Dragster?

Top Thrill Dragster opened in 2003 as the world鈥檚 tallest and fastest roller coaster as well as the first to top 400 feet. It held on to those records until Kingda Ka opened at in New Jersey in 2005.

Built by , a manufacturer based in Schaan, Liechtenstein, Dragster operated at the park until 2021 when an L-shaped metal bracket broke from the ride and struck a Michigan woman waiting in line in the head, seriously injuring her.

The ride was shut down after the incident and remained so until the park announced Top Thrill 2 and began construction on the new ride in 2023.

A civil lawsuit was filed on behalf of the woman injured in the accident. That case is set to go to trial in February 2025.

This story originally appeared in the June 2024 issue of 黑料网 Detroit magazine. To read more, pick up a copy of 黑料网 Detroit at a local retail outlet. Our digital edition will be available on June 6.