Top 10 Steel Roller Coasters of 2012 – Coaster Poll Results


Mitch Hawker has released the results of his annual Internet Coaster Poll. This year’s results were pretty interesting with a number of new additions to the top ten:

1 Expedition GeForce at Holiday Park – Hassloch, Germany – Intamin Mega Coaster (2nd)
2 Bizarro at Six Flags New England Springfield, Mass. – Intamin Mega Coaster (1st)
3 New Texas Giant at Six Flags Over Texas – Dallas, Texas – Rocky Mountain Hybrid (New)
4 Intimidator 305 at Kings Dominion Intamin Giga Coaster (3rd)
5 Kawasemi at Tobu Zoo Park – Saitama, Japan – Intamin Mega-Lite Coaster (4th)
6 Shambhala at Port Aventura – Salou, Spain – B&M Hyper Coaster (New)
7 Skyrush at Hersheypark – Pennsylvania, United States – Intamin Mega Coaster (New)
8 iSpeed at Mirabilandia – Savio, Italy – Intamin Launch Coaster (10th)
9t Katun at Mirabilandia – Savio, Italy – B&M Inverted Coaster (9th)
9t Mega-Lite at Happy Valley – Shanghai, China – Intamin Mega-Lite Coaster (New)
9t Maverick at Cedar Point – Ohio, United States – Intamin Launch Coaster (13th)
12 Nemesis at Alton Towers – Staffordshire, England – B&M Inverted Coaster (5th)

See the complete 2012 Steel Roller Coaster Poll results.

Leaving the top steel coasters were two more (that’s right two more) Intamin Mega Lites in Goliath and Piraten. Do you think they’re any good?  Millennium Force, a ride which regularly trades with Bizarro in the Golden Ticket Awards rankings, was also bumped out. I’m excited to see the New Texas Giant right up there with the best in the World as it’s near the top of my steel list too.

Coaster Fans Shun Wing Coasters, Have Tough Thighs

Six Flags Great America’s X-Flight tied B&M floorless looper Hair Raiser at 58th. And Dollywood’s Wild Eagle came in at a surprisingly low 87th. I didn’t expect these coasters to crack the top ten. They were awesome rides and I rated them both 9.0 out of 10. But on the international scale, I’m not sure they’d dominate. Still, we may see them slowly climb the list as they were brand new last year.
Skyrush Roller Coaster - Hersheypark
The ultra-extreme Skyrush was more appreciated by the types of coaster fans who filled out the survey. Maligned by some of the general public, it looks like it was given its due by coaster fans. Even though some coaster fans were both torn between loving it while being scared for their lives. Read more about 2012’s most polarizing roller coaster in this Guest Review of Skyrush at Hersheypark.

Is the List Too International?

While there could be maybe just the slightest bit of international bias from traveling enthusiasts, no list is perfect and I much prefer writing about this one than the Golden Ticket Awards. Even though I’ve only ridden three of the top 10, I enjoy seeing the diversity of the list and learning about the coasters that I need to target for future trips and even the others that I may never reach.

Best of the Rest

Other North American roller coasters that made the top 25 were: Bush Gardens Tampa’s Montu (17th), Leviathan at Canada’s Wonderland (18th), Nitro at Six Flags Great Adventure (19th), Six Flags Over Georgia’s Goliath (20th), Mindbender at Galaxyland (23rd), and X2 at Six Flags Magic Mountain (25th).

What’s your take on this year’s Internet Coaster Poll results? How many of these top steel roller coasters have you ridden? Images courtesy of

Founder of My favorite coasters are B&M hypers and gigas. I'm also a huge fan of terrain roller coasters.


  1. It’s really nice to see my two favorites on the list… I305, and Maverick. YAY! I can’t wait to try Skyrush.

  2. Cool. How do you vote?

  3. I also like the diversity of this list. Definitely does not look like another “vote for the standard fare” list, especially with Intimidator 305 being so high and MF not even making it. I also like seeing Maverick get respect. Easily my favorite coaster so far.

  4. The list does seem very diverse. The only coaster I’ve ridden though is Maverick, which I gave a 10 out of 10. I hope to be going to Kings Dominion this season to pick up I305 as my family is being relocated to Raleigh, NC.

  5. really cool list, seems like Intamin has some fans out there. I’ve only been on Maverick and Skyrush of the top ten though, it looks like I have some traveling to do. Nice to see Montu getting some love as well in the top 25, love that ride.

  6. Great to see Skyrush on the list. I305 is a bit overrated. And where the hell is Apollo’s Chariot?

    • I’m sure it’s been up there in the past, but it looks like Apollo’s fallen out of favor a bit. It’s at 32 right next to another personal favorite, Kumba at 33.

  7. I’ve ridden 8 of these 12 coasters and must say that for me personally all those 8 are rated very highly, except Shabhala, which I found quite forceless. So for me this list seems like a good selection.

    • Very impressive Surya. Remind me where you’re from again. Europe, right?

      I’d imagine Shambhala will fall over time as this group might seem to favor more intense rides. Even though you say it was forceless, was it at least “adventurous”. Did it beg at least a second or third ride, or were you bored? I really liked the way that ride looked when I saw it last year.

      • I’m from Belgium. I’ve done an East coast trip in 2011, a West coast stip in 2010, a trip to Cedar Point in 2008. I go to Germany and England for a couple of coasters every other year or so. And last year I did a trip of Germany, Spain and Italy, which included Expedition GeForce, iSpeed, Katun and Shambhala.
        And we only rode Shambhala twice (front + back) and wheren’t aching to ride again.

        This year we’re off to the UK again for an other visit to Alton Towers and Thorpe 🙂

  8. It seems like all of the B&M Megacoasters are ranked a little lower than one might expect. Could they be cancelling each other out? I know I’ve ridden quite a few over the past two years and even though Apollo’s Chariot and Nitro are perennial favorites in the Golden Ticket Awards, Diamondback actually was easily my favorite so far.

  9. I’m delighted to see I305 come in near the top of the list. It was number 2 on my own list – I did vote in the poll – just behind Millennium Force which, as has been pointed out, is conspicuously missing. Also happy to see Skyrush up there; this is a surprise. And Maverick, which is not a surprise. Unhappy to see Nitro ranked lower this year than last year.

  10. That list is very different than the Golden Ticket list. Also I agree with the coaster critic that the list is too international. You do have too include more roller coasters like at places like Cedar Point. I don’t know why Millennium Force is not on the list. But a list is a list and roller coaster lists start arguments not end them in a good way


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