herald

Saturday 21 October 2017

'This rollercoaster is the stuff bucket lists are made of' - Europe's largest wooden rollercoaster opens in Tayto Park

Comedian Jason Byrne pictured on the Cu Chulainn roller coaster at the opening of the new Cu Chulainn Coaster at Tayto Park, Co. Meath this morning. The coaster is Europe's largest wooden rollercoaster with an inversion
Comedian Jason Byrne pictured on the Cu Chulainn roller coaster at the opening of the new Cu Chulainn Coaster at Tayto Park, Co. Meath this morning. The coaster is Europe's largest wooden rollercoaster with an inversion
Nicola Anderson on the rollercoaster
Tayto park founder, Raymond Coyle with Cian Harty, whose dream to ride a roller coaster has been facilitated by Share a Dream and Tayto Park at the opening of the new Cu Chulainn Coaster at Tayto Park, Co. Meath
Comedian Jason Byrne pictured on the Cu Chulainn roller coaster at the opening of the new Cu Chulainn Coaster at Tayto Park, Co. Meath this morning. The coaster is Europe's largest wooden rollercoaster with an inversion
Queen Maedbh, Cu Chulainn, King Ailil, Conchubhar Macneassa, and Aife at the opening of the new Cu Chulainn Coaster at Tayto Park, Co. Meath
Cu Chulainn Coaster at Tayto Park launch. Pictured are members of the press and guests at the launch of the Cu Chulainn Coaster at Tayto Park, Ashbourne, Co. Meath

I spot the towering edifice as I park my car. It seems to be made entirely of pick-up sticks and jenga bricks.

Not a reassuring thought, when you're about to climb aboard Europe's largest wooden rollercoaster - and the first with an 'inversion' - which translates as turning you upside down.

But this rollercoater is the stuff bucket lists are made of.

READ MORE: Europe's largest wooden rollercoaster opens in Tayto Park

Potato crisp tycoon Ray Coyle, the founder of Tayto Park and Largo Foods, hopes this rollercoaster will stand for 100 years, as many wooden ones elsewhere have.

Lead rollercoaster designer from the Gravity Group, Korey Kiepert, designed the Cu Chulainn from his office in Ohio in the States.

2015-06-05_new_10141986_I6.JPG
Nicola Anderson on the rollercoaster

Nicola Anderson on the rollercoaster

"When you see people come off with smiles you really feel it's worth it because there were a lot of late nights," he says.

In the front seats for the first taste were Ray with Cian Harty (11) from Castlebar, Co Mayo - who has Cystic Fibrosis and whose wish to ride on a major rollercoaster was facilitated by the Share A Dream Foundation.

He couldn't sleep with excitement the night before.

"I'd go again," said Cian afterwards.

"It was really fast - I loved the adrenaline."

Two rollercoaster enthusiasts Dan Cox (23) and Charlotte Phillips (20) who work at Alton Towers in the UK are here "just for fun" rather than to check out the competition.

They were impressed. As was Richard Bannister of the European Coaster Club. He spends his holidays travelling around theme parks and even met his girlfriend in a theme park.

This was his 2,137th ride and afterwards he put it "well up there with the very best in Europe".

"I loved this," he said.

Personally, I hated it. But I know I'm alone on this.

Related Content


Promoted articles

Entertainment News