Kumali - 2006 Vekoma SLC located at Flamingo Land, North Yorkshire UK!
Let’s face it, Vekoma SLCs don’t tend to have the best reputation amongst enthusiasts nowadays due to the fact that most claim they are exceedingly rough, unpleasant to ride and overall a less than satisfactory experience! That being the case we still absolutely love them and as such Kumali at Flamingo Land just outside Malton, North Yorkshire is no exception to this rule!
Packing a punch with a whopping 4.7 G’s (which we can assume would be at the bottom of the first drop) this beast of a ride truly delivers and then some! It’s highly fitting in our opinion that this coaster should have been named after the Zoo’s former Alpha Male Lion as it really is wild, fast paced, has a real bite to it and in some cases a little unpredictable as well!
"What a Drop!!!"
This awesome SLC is 1 of 3 located here in the UK with the other 2 being Infusion at Blackpool Pleasure Beach (Just NO!!!) and Odyssey at Fantasy Island and even though we are yet to ride Odyssey (which according to all who we have mentioned this to we are not missing much – we don’t believe that for a second!!) we absolutely adore this ride and are always sure to make this our first port of call on every visit to the park!
Packs a Punch at 4.7 Gs!!
To give you an idea of what to expect when riding this complete animal your experience will go as follows!!; You exit the station and immediately start to ascend the 117 ft before you are thrust over the edge and down into a black out fuelled turn packing a whopping 4.7 Gs as previously mentioned! You then complete the first of 4 inversions – the vertical loop which again gives you that woah factor as you float over the top before twisting and sprinting through a cobra roll! At this point the sheer exhilaration of the ride starts to immediately take effect and the adrenaline will have started to course through your veins! You then complete the last of the 4 inversions sailing (quite literally due to the weightlessness feeling you get) through a Zero-G roll before heading straight into an invert loop and finally you smash at full pelt into the break run (not as painful as it sounds trust us!)
It is evident that this custom SLC has been designed to retain it’s speed throughout hitting a top speed of 55 mph at it’s fastest!! The mixture of inversions, tight banked turning and overall pace of the ride puts this in firm first place for us as Flamingo land’s number one coaster and is only rivalled by Mumbo Jumbo (which we will save for another time!).
The ride also has to have possibly the most catchy soundtrack we have ever heard as well (which we are currently listening to whilst writing this review – mistake? haha!!). The soundtrack in question was composed specifically on commission of the park by Electric Street Police, a British TV composer by the name of Paul Bickerdike who has previous credits on TV and in film at Cannes!!
"A thing of sheer Beauty!"
Overall Kumali has to be the smoothest SLC we have ridden out of the two we have experienced (yes that’s right we said it! The smoothest!) and with a fantastic mix of speed, G-force fuelled banking and airtime filled inversions this beast of a ride cements itself at the top as Flamingo Land’s best ride overall in our personal opinion! We therefore can’t wait to see how ‘Inversion’ ranks against this instant classic when it’s air gates open to the public later this year!!