Iron Gwazi – Bringing the BITE back to Busch Gardens Tampa Bay in 2021!

We share our first thoughts and reactions on today's official pov reveal of one of Florida's most anticipated roller coasters of 2021 - Iron Gwazi!

Well, it’s finally happened!!

After months of enthusiasts and the general public alike bugging the living daylights of out Busch Gardens Tampa Bay to reveal the official pov of their brand new addition of what will now be 2021 as opposed to 2020 as originally planned the park finally sated their fans and released the pov to rave reviews this afternoon on USA Today!

The pov shares  the first official look at what fans have been eagerly awaiting for quite some time – a front row ride on the park’s brand new Rocky Mountain Construction conversion of their former wooden coaster Gwazi.

Now then, although this absolute goliath of an IBOX RMC shares it’s predecessor’s original name it’s quite clear from finally getting a look at what this beast has to offer that the two coasters will be nothing alike whatsoever when it comes to the ride experience overall.

As where Gwazi offered some brilliant little pops of airtime and a few decent drops to boot, Iron Gwazi will plunge it’s willing victims beyond vertical at an angle of 91 degrees before taking them through an absolute onslaught of airtime, hangtime, fast paced transitions and a fair amount of ejector airtime as well.

The other difference which stands between the two is the fact that as where Gwai was originally a duelling wooden coaster, Iron Gwazi is one on it’s own and this therefore means that riders can look forward to a lengthy ride experience at just under 2 minutes in total.

Riders will also reach blistering speeds of up to and including 76mph making the ride one of the fastest on park to date.

What did we think of the pov?!

The truth remains that you can never quite fully understand what a ride offers until you have actually set foot on it for yourself, however taking that into consideration it’s fair to say that if the pov released today is anything to go by then the ride experience itself is going to be absolutely nuts to say the least!

The pov offers a front row perspective throughout. This therefore means that it’s safe to say you can expect some fantastic views from the top of the lift hill.

Throughout the pace of the ride appears not to falter meaning that some of the elements you will experience throughout will be taken with quite some pace!

The pace of Iron Gwazi appears to parallel that of Steel Vengeance at Cedar Point, however the layout definitely seems to draw inspiration from the manufacturer’s first ever ground up Ibox coaster Zadra meaning that some of the elements contained within the ride (particularly the first outbanked turn around) seem to mirror those included within it’s layout.

What is clear however is that when it comes to the experience overall the two will differ quite greatly.

A where Iron Gwazi seems to cover quite some distance throughout it’s 1 minute and 50 second ride time, Zadra appears to give for a much more compact footprint overall.

This means that  Zadra will more than likely include more near misses than the likes of Iron Gwazi, however what is clear is that Iron Gwazi is much more about speed and agility than it is about taking your head off.

One of the highlights for us definitely has to be the insane overbanked curve over the station which we are certain will more than likely give for the greatest ejector airtime throughout the full duration of the ride.

Other fantastic elements include the downward barrel roll passing under the lift hill and the sheer amount of ups and downs this coaster provides!

We are therefore eager to get out to Busch Gardens Tampa Bay and try this out for ourselves as soon as it opens and we feel it safe to say that most of the enthusiast community will undoubtedly feel the same way.

When Does Iron Gwazi Open?

Although Iron Gwazi was set to open earlier this season gone (so much so that an advertising campaign started to circulate within the Florida area advertising the ride as “Now Open”) due to the sheer scale of the impacts caused by the current pandemic the ride opening along with many others has now been postponed until Spring 2021.

This doesn’t however mean that we will have to wait forever for this ride to open as judging by the rate this year has gone 2021 will undoubtedly be here in the blink of an eye.

In the meantime why not sit back and check out this fantastic pov for yourselves in the below video and get your first official taste of what this monstrous RMC has to offer those brave enough to ride it as it twists, dives and turns through an onslaught of unbridled adrenaline and thrills that will more than likely leave even the most hardened amongst us gasping for breath whilst grinning maniacally from ear to ear!!