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Danbury's WestConn Students Help Launch 'Wicked Cyclone' At Six Flags

Jessica Stanley, of Southington, is sitting in the second row, behind Ana Cabrera, of Somers, seated in the front row. Next to Stanley in the second row is Zack Duhaime, of Hamden. Photo Credit: Contributed
Jessica Stanley (far left), Ana Cabrera (kneeling in the front left), Zack Duhaime, second from the left, and Ana Moreno, of Southbury, fourth from the right. Photo Credit: Contributed

DANBURY, Conn. -- As part of the launch of Six Flags New England's "Wicked Cyclone" coaster, the amusement park invited renowned storm chaser and meteorologist Reed Timmer and about two dozen meteorology students from WCSU to go for the first spin May 20, according to a press release.

Meteorology junior Jessica Stanley, of Southington, is studying operational meteorology at WCSU. She hopes to one day forecast weather on TV before becoming a meteorology professor to share her love of weather with others, according to a press release.

Stanley and her classmates were given a behind-the-scenes tour of the coaster that features a 109-foot climb, a 78-degree drop and 24 different ride elements including two Zero-G rolls within 3,320 feet of track, at a maximum speed of 55 miles per hour.

“The click-climb as the ride ascends is always the hardest part, and this was very smooth. My favorite part was the barrel roll, a horizontal corkscrew at Zero-G. It was one of the best roller coasters I’ve ever been on," said Stanley in a press release.

“The drop was insane — it was more than a 70-degree drop. And with the loops upside down, you really feel the Zero gravity in your stomach; so it was really, really fun. It probably is accurate and on point with how it would feel to be in a cyclone, or chasing one," said sophomore operational meteorology student Ana Cabrera, of Somers, in  a press release.

Southbury resident Ana Moreno, who will be a senior operational meteorology major next fall, said being among the first to ride was very exciting and included a big send-off with confetti and V.I.P. treatment, according to a press release.

Equally adrenaline-inducing for the WCSU meteorology students was the presence of storm chaser Timmer and his fiancée, who had the honor of riding in the front row of the roller coaster on its maiden voyage, according to a press release.

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