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Busch Gardens confirms Sandstorm ride will be moved

Busch Gardens Tampa Bay has filed for permits to remove its Sandstorm ride from the Timbuktu section of the park to make way for a new attraction in 2013.

Busch officials confirmed they are moving the Sandstorm, a portable so-called flat ride, to the plaza in front of the Gwazi twin coasters, but said it was "too preliminary" to talk about what might go in its place.

Based on fan websites and park attraction buying history, speculation is focused on a new drop tower rising in front of the Desert Grill. Drop towers, which feature free-fall drops at 60 to 80 miles per hour, can range from simple tummy ticklers at state fairs to the elaborately themed Twilight Zone Tower of Terror at Disney's Hollywood Studios that unpredictably bounces riders up and down a few times.

Busch's sister park in Virginia, which this spring opens an accelerated launch coaster using the same technology the powers Cheetah Hunt in Tampa, last year debuted a 245-foot-tall drop tower next to the park's Oktoberfest dining hall.

Busch Gardens confirms Sandstorm ride will be moved 02/28/12 [Last modified: Thursday, March 1, 2012 2:46pm]
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