Tonnerre de Zeus

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Tonnerre de Zeus
Parc Astérix
Coordinates49°07′53″N 2°34′26″E / 49.13139°N 2.57389°E / 49.13139; 2.57389Coordinates: 49°07′53″N 2°34′26″E / 49.13139°N 2.57389°E / 49.13139; 2.57389
Opening date1997
General statistics
ManufacturerCustom Coasters International
DesignerDennis McNulty, Larry Bill
Lift/launch systemChain lift
Height98 ft (30 m)
Length4,044 ft (1,233 m)
Speed52 mph (84 km/h)
Height restriction130 cm (4 ft 3 in)
Trains2 trains with 7 cars. Riders are arranged 2 across in 2 rows for a total of 28 riders per train.
Tonnerre de Zeus at RCDB
Pictures of Tonnerre de Zeus at RCDB

Tonnerre de Zeus is a roller coaster at Parc Astérix in Plailly, France. Opened in 1997 and built by Custom Coasters International, it is as of today the 2nd longest wooden coaster in Europe, after Colossos, with a track length of 1230m (4044 feet); this coaster is also the second wooden roller coaster built in France after Walygator Parc's Anaconda, and the second massive roller coaster of the park after Goudurix, which was built since the park's opening in 1989. These two roller coasters were followed by la Trace du Hourra in 2001, and OzIris in 2012. No other wooden roller coaster was built in the hexagon until Walibi Rhône-Alpes' Timber in 2016.

Located in the park's rear Antique Greece section, not far from Goudurix, The 1232-metre-long coaster has a 30m (98-foot) tall lift hill, a first drop diving straight into a mouth-shaped-tunnel, and two helices, the first one at 572° and the second at 256°. It's recorded top-speed is 83,7 km/h, and two blue (one of them was red between 2004 and 2014) trains of 7 cars each, hold 56 people at a time enjoying several air-times due to the use of lap-bars as only protection. A safety belt holds each lap-bar down to prevent them from opening at hilltops. A third train, located in the garage located straight between the station and the turn leading to the lift hill, is stored for extra capacity should the need arise. On-ride photos can be purchased.

"Tonnerre de Zeus" is French for "Thunder of Zeus." In Greek mythology, Zeus was regarded as the king of gods. He also is often associated as being a weather god, hurling a thunderbolt at those who displeased him.

A large statue of Zeus, complete with floral underwear, is featured at the ride's queue entrance, which means that patrons can look directly up at Zeus' underwear; the queue extends through the neighbouring arbored areas, then follows the ride's final helix before the brakes line before heading towards the station itself : a massive Greek temple allowing for a quick passenger load/unload.