Great Coasters International
|Headquarters||Sunbury, Pennsylvania, U.S.|
|Products||Wooden roller coasters|
Great Coasters International, Inc. (GCI or GCII) is a Sunbury, Pennsylvania-based roller coaster manufacturer which has created several award-winning rides since its formation in 1994. Starting in 2006 with Thunderbird in Finland, the company expanded beyond the United States and began building coasters in Europe and Asia. Güenter-Engelhardt GmbH handles the company's marketing rights in Europe. In addition to designing and building new roller coasters, GCI also refurbishes and re-tracks existing roller coasters, regardless of manufacturer.
GCI designed roller coasters are known for their often curved drops, twisted layouts, and perception of high speed. Exciting elements such as the station fly-by and station fly-through have been incorporated in many of their layouts.
Many GCI designed roller coasters also contain an on-ride camera midway through or towards the end of the ride.
GCI was founded in 1994 by Mike Boodley and Clair Hain, Jr. Boodley was a coaster designer previously with Custom Coasters International and Hain had gained a reputation throughout the industry as a master coaster builder. In 1996, the firm opened Wildcat at Hershey Park which contained many of the signature elements the firm would soon become known for: tight sweeping curves, reminiscent of designs from the turn of the century by such noted coaster designers as Fred Church and Harry Traver. In 2005, Boodley retired and assigned Jeff Pike with the responsibility as lead designer for the firm. The first coaster that Pike is credited with is the Kentucky Rumbler at Beech Bend Park near Bowling Green, Kentucky.
Millennium Flyer trains
Most GCI-designed roller coasters run with in-house-designed articulated Millennium Flyer trains. The only exception is Roar at Six Flags America, which runs with Philadelphia Toboggan Coasters-designed trains. Gwazi at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay and GCI's first roller coaster, Wildcat at Hersheypark, also operated with PTC trains when they first opened, but both coasters have since been modified to run with the Millennium Flyer trains.
These trains are known for their cushioned seats, allowing riders to be comfortable during rides. These trains also contain individual lap bars which automatically lower and lock into a position to accommodate the rider, allowing quicker dispatch times. Millennium Flyer trains are known for their classic look with flared seat sides and individual lap bars. They are easily identified by their open, gate-like fronts, usually customized with the logo for the respective ride on which they are running.
|American Thunder (formerly Evel Knievel)||Wooden coaster||Six Flags St. Louis||2008|| |
|Apocalypse (formerly Terminator Salvation: The Ride)||Wooden coaster||Six Flags Magic Mountain||2009|| |
|El Toro||Wooden coaster||Freizeitpark Plohn||2009|| |
|Gold Striker||Wooden coaster||California's Great America||2013|| |
|Gwazi||Dueling Wooden Coaster||Busch Gardens Tampa Bay||1999|| |
|Joris en de Draak||Racing wooden coaster||Efteling||2010|| |
|Kentucky Rumbler||Wooden coaster||Beech Bend Park||2006|| |
|Lightning Racer||Racing wooden coaster||Hersheypark||2000|| |
|Ozark Wildcat||Wooden coaster||Celebration City||2003|| |
|Prowler||Wooden coaster||Worlds of Fun||2009|| |
|Renegade||Wooden coaster||Valleyfair||2007|| |
|Roar||Wooden coaster||Six Flags America||1998|| |
|Roar||Wooden coaster||Six Flags Discovery Kingdom||1999|| |
2015, now known as The Joker
|Thunderbird||Wooden coaster||PowerPark||2006|| |
|Thunderhead||Wooden coaster||Dollywood||2004|| |
|Troy||Wooden coaster||Toverland||2007|| |
|Wildcat||Wooden coaster||Hersheypark||1996|| |
|Wood Coaster (Mountain Flyer)||Wooden coaster||OCT East||2011|| |
|Wodan Timbur Coaster||Wooden coaster||Europa-Park||2012|| |
|White Lightning||Wooden coaster||Fun Spot America||2013|| |
|Python in Bamboo Forest||Wooden coaster||Nanchang Wanda Park||2016|| |
|Starliner||Wooden coaster||Miracle Strip at Pier Park|| |
|Heidi: The Ride||Wooden coaster||Plopsaland De Panne||2017|| |
|InvadR||Wooden Coaster||Busch Gardens Williamsburg||2017|| |
|Mystic Timbers||Wooden coaster||Kings Island||2017|| |
|SW8||Wooden coaster||Alton Towers||2018|| |
- Marden, Duane. "Roller Coaster Search Results (Great Coasters International)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved 5 July 2013.