Thorpe Park

Feel the force of the stars as you cycle through the signs of the Zodiac

Theme ParkThorpe Park
Park AreaLost City
AudienceOlder Families and Thrillseekeers
Opened2000 (temporary attraction as "Enterprise")
2001 (permanent attraction as "Zodiac")
2006 (replacement ride hardware)
Height 59 ft
Max Speed 19 mph
Capacity 500 riders per hour
Zodiac rises

Zodiac rises

Zodiac is an Enterprise style ride, typically found in fairgrounds and as a filler ride at theme parks.

Riders sit in carriages attached to the outside of a large wheel, which rotates and is gradually lifted by an arm to an upright position. The riders are held in by centrifugal force, which is strong enough to keep them in their seats without the need for any kind of restraint.

Zodiac originally arrived at Thorpe Park as a temporary attraction to fill the gap left by the loss of several rides in the major fire which broke out at the park in 2000. It became a permanent addition for the 2001 season, having been rethemed over the winter with zodiac symbols and a spectacular gold and turquoise paint job.

The original Enterprise wheel was replaced in 2006 with Cyclone from Drayton Manor which had to be removed from the Tamworth theme park after noise complaints. Unfortunately, Thorpe never bothered to replicate the theming of the original version of the ride and today’s Zodiac retains the silver/white paint job it had at Drayton. In fact, when it first arrived at Thorpe, the old Drayton Manor name signs were still clearly visible on the carriages!

Although not as thrilling as some of Thorpe’s other flat rides, Zodiac gives a fantastic ride. Once you realise that the forces are strong enough to hold you in place, it is easy to sit back, relax, and feel the summer breeze in your face as you race around the inside of the vertical wheel.

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