Was Thorpe Park Right to Issue This Letter?

  • Yes, they were justified

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Aug 17, 2010
Hi THORPE PARK Mania fans.

We hope you're all excited about the arrival of THE SWARM. We're having great fun building up to its launch and we hope you are too!

We wanted to write a little message to you all following the news that Six Flags Great America will also be launching a winged rollercoaster next year very similar to THE SWARM. Some of you may have noticed that when we say it's going to be very similar, it really is going to be VERY similar. When we set about designing and developing our winged coaster we had to make sure it had the THORPE PARK stamp on it. One of the ways we achieved this was by developing the unique inverted dive at the start of the ride that will be sure to kick-off your awesome apocalyptic flight in adrenaline-fuelled style! As you can imagine then, we were quite surprised to see that the new ride at Six Flags will also adopt the 'THORPE PARK Inversion'!

While we could be bitter about this, we would actually like to wish Six Flags Great America the best of luck with the 'THORPE PARK Inversion' and we hope that this is a start of things to come, that one day the 'THORPE PARK Inversion' will become famous in the rollercoaster world! We aim high!

Thanks again for all your support and we'll see you all at Fright Nights.


Ridiculous. Utterly absurd. I can't believe a park would go and diss on another park from another country over a design like that. Shouldn't Thorpe be mad at B&M, if anybody? I don't think Thorpe has the right to be mad at all. Thoughts?
In reality it's not that "unique" of an inversion, it's not much different from a Diving Loop. Infact RCDB lists it as a Diving Loop, see. If they really didn't want anyone using it, they should have patented it or had B&M sign a exclusivity contract. For all we know, B&M could have came up with it.
B&M probably did create the inversion. Thorpe is crying about things they have no business crying about, in my opinion. BGT didn't cry about not having the only official B&M cobra roll after they were the first to have it. It's just stupid to me.
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I really want to know why Thorpe Park is so mad about a coaster. The one they are getting isn't the official Wing Rider yet, as B&M intends on having the Wingrider rotate like the S&S 4D coasters.

Really I think Thorpe is pointing fingers at the wrong people. SFGam just probably wanted any sort of Wing Rider and B&M picked Thorpe's design because it would save them money. Ride designs are cloned and copied all of the time, there's no need to take a shot at a totally different park in a totally different country across a whole freaking ocean.
The layouts are not actually the same. Thorpe is just mad about the drop inversion. I've read in other places though that this may be British humor; Thorpe is just trying to get publicity in a crazy way, just as they have done before. After re-reading the letter, I do think it's possible that this is not serious. At least I hope so.

Can I apologise on behalf of the British theme park industry and enthusiasts for this?

That is so typically Thorpe Park. I hadn't seen this. I would have thought this is a marketing stunt and nothing serious, but it's embarrassing none the less. What is interesting is their use of enthusiasts to kick up a fuss. Why they'd want to show they aren't unique though to a wider audience who'd be none the wiser is beyond me.

It's nothing more than a wind up, but if it was anything more, you'd probably be surprised how much involvement the parks have with the design of their rides. B&M ultimately design it, but to the park's specifications. The original layout proposal for Swarm would have come from Merlin.
Tell that to Six Flags Saint Louis when they wanted American Thunder. They just wanted any sort of woodie from GCI and GCI noticed they had enough space for a Thunderbird clone (Thunderbird @ Powerland). Six Flags didn't even notice until someone mentioned it and they we're just like "oh, that's cool."

But even if it's marketing, it wasn't a good idea to take a shot at a park across a freaking ocean. It isn't like Great America gets more visitors from England than Thorpe =/
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