Cedar Point’s flagship steel accelerated roller coaster Top Thrill Dragster has been retired after 18 years of service.

At the time of its opening on 4 May 2003, it was the tallest roller coaster in the world and the first full-circuit roller coaster to go beyond 400ft high. 

It reached 120 mph in just 17 seconds and gave many a guest the top thrill of a lifetime.

Sadly, as the years went by, the rides maintenance gradually became more of an issue to the extent that the ride was closed on 15 August of last year due to a guest injured by a metal flag plate with half the bolts dislodging from a train as it entered the station. 

Since then, the ride has been closed and an extensive investigation has been carried out by park authorities with regards to the incident.

This led to an official announcement being made by the park on 6 September, which confirmed that the world’s first strata coaster ride would be retired after 19 seasons and carrying 18 million guests.

However, the ride is to be reimagined as Cedar Point confirm: “Cedar Point’s legacy of ride innovation continues. Our team is hard at work, creating a new and reimagined ride experience.”

The evolution of Top Thrill Dragster is in the pipeline, and it remains to be seen what the park has up its sleeve to continue being one of the most beloved roller coaster capitals of the world.