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Carowinds' Fury 325 joins an elite club of world's tallest coasters

Carowinds' Fury 325 joins an elite club of world's tallest coasters
The Fury 325 giga coaster is set to debut at the Carowinds amusement park, on the border of North Carolina and South Carolina, in 2015. (Carowinds)

The $30-million Fury 325 coming to Carowinds in 2015 will be among the fastest, tallest and longest roller coasters in the world.

Set to debut in spring 2015, the 325-foot-tall giga coaster will fly over and under a new entrance plaza planned for the amusement park located on the North Carolina-South Carolina state line.

Built by Swiss-based Bolliger and Mabillard, the Fury 325 will reach a top speed of 95 mph over a 6,600-foot-long track featuring airtime hills and overbanked turns.

After climbing to the top of the 32-story lift hill, riders will descend an 81-degree first drop into a 190-foot-tall barrel turn and a high-speed S-curve.

After racing over Carowinds’ front gate, Fury will whip around a 157-foot-tall, 91-degree overbanked horseshoe turn before diving under a pedestrian bridge near the entrance plaza.

Following a 101-foot-tall curve and a 111-foot-tall hill, the last leg of the ride concludes with a double helix carousel and a pair of camelback hills.

Fury's hornet-and-hive theme pays tribute to the nearby North Carolina city of Charlotte, which was dubbed a "hornet's nest of rebellion" during the Revolutionary War. Fury's teal and white track also makes a sartorial nod to the colors of Charlotte's NBA basketball team, which reclaims the Hornets name this season after playing as the Bobcats for a decade.

Billed as the world's tallest and fastest giga coaster (a high-speed inversionless coaster exceeding 300 feet), Fury will surpass the 318-foot-tall Steel Dragon 2000 and tie the Japanese ride for top speed at 95 mph. Ranking near the top of the record books in several categories, Fury will be the fifth tallest, fifth longest and sixth fastest roller coaster in the world.

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The new ride will also become the world’s tallest coaster with a traditional chain lift; the four taller rides are all launch coasters. That means you’ll have exactly 63.58 seconds to think about just how tall Fury is as you ascend to the top of the lift hill.

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At 325 feet, Fury joins an exclusive club of coasters taller than 300 feet: Kingda Ka (456 feet), Top Thrill Dragster (420 feet), Superman: Escape from Krypton (415 feet), Tower of Terror II (377 feet), Steel Dragon 2000 (318 feet), Millennium Force (310 feet), Intimidator 305 (305 feet) and Leviathan (305 feet).

Joining 2013’s Gatekeeper at Ohio’s Cedar Point, Fury 325 becomes the second coaster to be incorporated into a new front entrance at a Cedar Fair park. Which raises the question: Which location in the amusement park chain will get the next coaster-gate? The strongest contenders: Knott’s Berry Farm, Canada’s Wonderland, Kings Island and Kings Dominion.

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