The calendar shows spring now for a couple of days,
and slowly the weather starts to behave accordingly. So the parks had and have
the opportunity to conduct the last preparations for the new season and to
finish any construction in a frost free environment. At Phantasialand the
installation of Black Mamba is finished, and by March 10th the first 100 test
runs had been done. As the lately set up webcam on www.deepinafrica.de shows,
theming is in full swing. Hence the ride has - as expected - not opened with
the park on April 1st. At Parque de Atracciones in Madrid, too, the steel work
for Abismo has been finished and first test runs have been conducted, so the
opening is to happen rather soon. At Tusenfryd in Norway prolonged low
temperatures have surely not been beneficial for the progress of construction
work, but considering the opening scheduled for April 23rd it would now be time
for some test runs of Intamin´s Speed Monster. "De Vliegende Hollander"
at Efteling obviously had some problems with these, so the opening had to be
postponed to a yet unknown date. Thorpe Park has already started the new season
on March 15th, and since then Europe´s highest and fastest Launch Coaster
Stealth waits for daring riders.
In Vienna, too, it was cold during this year´s
Euro Attractions Show that was being held for the second time in a row at the
convention center in Austria´s capital. So only very few visitors went to
the nearby Prater to test Fun Time´s Star Flyer and The Bell. Major
surprises can´t be reported from Europe´s leading trade show, since
the low capital spending in the last years seems to have an impact on the
manufcturers´ budgets for design and development as well as trade show
appearance. But the industry sees high spirits at the horizon, hopefully
marking a trend reversal. The driving force could be the launch coasters that
are offered by several companies in a multitude of sizes and characteristics.
In addition, water seems to be a highly relevant topic. See our detailed report
for more information on the EAS 2006.