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The Best Dueling Coasters

September 27, 2012


Sorry about not having posted anything recently, life’s been very busy.

Racing coasters were popular during the “golden age of coasters” in the 1920s. The concept was that there were two separate coaster tracks that were side by side which would “race” each other through the layout. In 1998 Six Flags Kentucky Kingdom opened Twisted Sisters, the first dueling coaster. This new form of ride is much like the racing coasters however instead of the two tracks being side by side the whole time, they have several near collisions during the ride. Here are some of the best and most famous Dueling coasters.


Gwazi was really the first famous dueling coaster. When it opened in 1999 the world finally realized what dueling coasters could do. Unfortunately it has gotten rough in the past couple years. When I rode it for the first time in 2005 it was great. I rode it again in 2007 and it had gotten pretty rough. The park has refurbished it since then though so it might be better now.

Lightning Racer

Lightning Racer was the first coaster to both race and duel. I rode this ride on my trip to Hersheypark this year and I can say that it is not only great for a double coaster, it is just a great coaster in general. It is the best coaster that I’ve ridden for competition. They announce the winner in the station and there is actually a different victor every time!

Dueling Dragons

The first dueling steel coaster in the world, Dueling Dragons (now known as Dragon Challenge) is my favorite double tracked coaster. The two sides are drastically different. Each track has its own unique layout and inversions. The fact that the ride is inverted just adds to the thrills.

Battlestar Galactica

The second steel dueling coaster is Battlestar Galactica. This ride takes it up a level from Dueling Dragons and has one side be inverted and the other be a conventional sit down. The inverted side is a more intense coaster with inversions. The sit-down side is a gentler ride. I didn’t know this before but check out the video below, the coasters have LSM lifts like Maverick!

Dauling Dragon

Dauling Dragon is the world’s newest dueling coaster. Built by The Gravity Group this coaster features a brand new element, the high-five. The two trains simultaneously travel through a hill that is banked at 90 degrees. The riders on the two trains can supposedly touch each others hands.

One thing that I’ve noticed is that there are a lot of dueling coasters that are themed to dragons. You’ve got Dueling Dragons, Dauling Dragon, and one that I didn’t talk about here: Joris en de Draak (Draak means Dragon in Dutch.)

What do you think? Which dueling coaster looks like it’s the best? Please comment. Thanks for reading! 🙂




From → Features

  1. Matt P permalink

    Battlestar Galactica looks really slow from the video and the red side looks boring. The concept of an inverted coaster vs a sit down is pretty cool though and the fog is cool as well. Unfortunately for dueling dragons I heard they will not longer run both trains at the same time. 😦

    • I think the red side of Battlestar Galactica is supposed to be less intense because it’s the family coaster side. Now that you mention it though, both sides do appear to be rather slow. Thanks for commenting! 🙂

  2. I live in Tampa and ride Gwazi all the time. It is still a little rough but I love the air time and the speed. It’s a rocking coaster.

  3. Good list, but it’s such a shame that Universal had to change the dueling of “Dragon Challenge” to be staggered. Now t just feels like the ride is lacking.

    Something I really wish they’d do is a dueling steel coaster, where one track is a flying coaster, and the other half is like a flying coaster but with you lying with your chest towards the track, and if they did an element like on Full Throttle where it’s dual spined track, my coaster dreams would come true!!

  4. There is a small amusement park nestled in the hills about 8 – 10 miles from downtown Pittsburgh, PA. Called Kennywood, it has kept some coasters that are historical landmarks. I grew up a mile from the park. There is a racing/dueling (not sure which classification fits) – called, simply, The Racer, erected in 1927. 2 trains sit in the station; the one that starts on the left will come in on the right & vice versa because THE TRACK IS ONE CONTINUOUS TRACK, not 2 tracks side by side. This type of artistry is rarely found, & only a few survived the years. Of course, it’s wooden.
    There’s another oldie very close to it, called the Jack Rabbit. Built in, I believe, 1925, it was one of the first wooden coasters to feature a double dip. When I was a kid, they had a 2nd coaster, erected in the late 1920s, that they called the Pippin, but when I was in my early teens, they tore it up to some extent & made it into the Thunderbolt, a coaster that held a top 10 spot for a long time. The park has very limited space & is built on land with a steep hill to the Monongahela River, a hill riddled with ravines, & the coaster builders used these land features to enhance their coaster building. They put in a coaster that had the purpose of getting one soaking wet (Pittsburgh Plunge), & around the same time, they put in the first steel coaster in the area (& one of the first in the US), calling it the Phantom. Many avid coaster fans in the area were upset when it, like its neighbor the Pippin that was torn up to make the Thunderbolt, was torn up to make the Phantom’s Revenge. The Thunderbolt was an improvement, but IMO the Phantom’s Revenge was NOT. They removed 4 back to back corkscrew loops in favor of bunny hills, a few twists here & there, & little else, although they did keep the original first dip that nearly goes into the river. At 196 feet & 93 mph, that first dip is a doozy!
    I moved away a long time ago, going back to visit my Mom (& Kennywood if it was summer), until she got too ill to stay there on her own & I got too sick to keep driving up every week & work a 40+ hour workweek. I’m now disabled. My conditions wouldn’t stop me from going on a coaster per se – the problem is I’m too sick to get there, & even if I did, I’d be too sick to stay for long. I couldn’t possibly wait in long lines. I therefore really appreciate the POV coaster ride sims on YouTube as they are the only way I can enjoy, to some extent, the sensation of the coaster ride.
    Perhaps you can take some time this coming summer to see an amusement (not a theme, at least not the last time I was there) park where walking is actually relatively limited due to the small area, where rides are right next to each other & sometimes seem to intertwine. The last time I was there, you could take a picnic hamper with you, put it on a picnic table, leave it while you ride, & NO ONE will touch it.
    Oh, they also have something they call a “sky coaster,” which seems to be a cross between a bungee jump & a huge swing. I never got up the nerve for that one.
    BTW, can you tell me: WHERE IS THE TYPHON’S RAGE COASTER? I see a lot of vids – well, actually one that is featured on most of the Google search results repeatedly – but it doesn’t say where the coaster is physically. I’m curious. It doesn’t look like it could be in the US. Thanks. Enjoy Kennywood – & if you like, down the road is their water park, the Sand Castle. I’m now allergic to the sun, so I can’t swim anymore – the reflection doubles the allergy risk.

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