My last visit to the Pleasure Beach was in 2016, so I was very excited to finally ride the park’s newest addition, the Mack Rides roller coaster Icon. For the 2022 season, the last car of one of the trains was replaced by a car offering a spinning pair of seats, thus creating the Ensō experience – a nice feature which comes with a heavy price tag.
The ride on Icon starts rather slowly as we are approaching the launch position. Starting from a standstill, we directly approach the lift hill support structure of the Big One roller coaster whilst racing over a huge camelback hill. After a steep curve resembling an inclided loop tilted to the left, we make our way towards the courtyard of the Steeplechase roller coaster. After diving under the old horse ride coaster, we take some quick near ground direction changes, before we finally gain a bit of altitude and cross the track. Right above the visitors, we now take a well ballanced heartline roll – something you would not expect from a Mack Rides roller coaster. After making our way below the huge camelback hill, we dive down into a tunnel which leads directly into the second launch.
After being accelerated the second time, we gain up some height in a non-inverting Immelmann turn. This element rides itself rather odd, yet if gives you some views onto the park. A very funny right-hand bend follows, which leads into a very hill and dale section of the layout. After going up and down for quite a while, we now race over a weirdly banked speed bump, leading into a sequence of very short swifts to the right and to the left, where one of them unnecessarily crosses the Big Dipper roller coaster. After that, we are done and quickly approach the station.
Icon has a very strong first act and a weaker second one. It’s funny that the ride is actually at its best, when the constrains due to the limited space were most severe. On the rather large plot of land where the second part of the roller coaster runs, the ride is quite repetitive. Especially the end of the ride is unfortunately not quite as successful. I would have liked to see a series of straight camelbacks here that would really knock your socks off, instead we swerve continuously from the right to the left and vice versa. Icon is therefore not my favourite ride at the Blackpool Pleasure Beach, nor comes anywhere close to the first double launch coaster the Pleasure Beach is offering since 1979. Anyhow, it is still a fun ride and a nice addtion to the fantastic rides at Blackpool Pleasure Beach.
Pictures Blackpool Pleasure Beach
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