For the 2017 season, California’s Great America revamped their Bolliger and Mabillard stand-up coaster, Vortex, into a fancy new floorless coaster called Patriot! Back with sleek new trains, a beautiful paint job, and a much more enjoyable ride, this conversion is a clear success.
Standing at a diminutive 91 feet tall, Patriot is one of the smaller B&M Floorless coasters. I did not personally think this affected the ride experience, though.
The coaster has a top speed of 45 miles per hour, making it the slowest floorless coaster out there. Despite this, Patriot still maintains a nice pace through the majority of its elements.
With a total track length of 1,920 ft, Patriot is not a lengthy ride. This is one of its biggest weaknesses.
Patriot was running two trains with fairly quick operations, and the queue always seemed to be moving relatively quickly.
Traditional B&M floorless restraints, woohoo! These are extremely comfortable and provide a great ride experience! Unless you completely despise OSTRs, you’ll probably like Patriot’s restraints.
This coaster is definitely not focused on intensity, but portions of the ride such as the kick and its subsequent corkscrew prove to be extremely forceful! This was a nice surprise to me.
Patriot’s definitely not the smoothest ride in the world, but it could be a lot worse. It had a bit of a rattle, and I did get headbanging, but Patriot still felt smoother than Rougarou (Cedar Fair’s other standup-to-floorless conversion).
There’s pretty much no theming whatsoever on this ride. The entrance sign is cool, though!
Patriot has no airtime, and its loop is pretty average. However, the corkscrew is fantastic, providing some great forces!
Patriot is an extremely enjoyable coaster; however, I think that its slight rattle, headbanging and short duration could take away from the experience for some.
Overall Score: 52/100
Overall, Patriot is a fantastic addition to California’s Great America. Although obviously far from perfect, Patriot does not disappoint, and it is a must ride when visiting the park. What do you think of Patriot? Let us know in the comments below!