The All-Russia Exhibition Center, or Vserossijskij Vystavochnyj Tsentr, is a 2,375,000 square metre trade show site located close to the VDNKh metro station in Moscow. It includes a public park, fountains, a museum, and two distinct amusement parks. Attrapark is the larger of the two, with almost fifty attractions spread out across a rectangular site to the left of the main exhibition center entrance. Almost all of the rides are portable models set up on base frames, giving the park a permanent carnival atmosphere along the lines of Wiener Prater.
The park is home to three roller coasters. Wilde Maus (#1928) was originally built for the Kinzler family in 1994, who operated it (and a mirror image) for a number of years before exporting it to Russia. The Kinzlers subsequently bought another mouse, which they ran for a few years before it was sold for conversion into Wilde Maus XXL. One can only speculate as to why they didn't keep their original versions.
This Wilde Maus operates with unusual cars that seat just two passengers rather than the usual four (or more!). One might have expected a slower ride with less weight in each car, but on the contrary; the lack of any trim braking today resulted in a very thrilling ride with extremely strong laterals, giving us one of those rare moments of coaster euphoria. The only negative was the ticket price of three hundred rubles (€7, USD $9.50), a pattern that was to repeat throughout the day.
Mini Coaster (#1929) was moved to Attrapark from the now defunct Star Galaxy Adventure, also in Moscow. Designed by L&T Systems, this ride is the same production model as Hot Tamales and Sideshow Spin. We were given an almost interminable number of laps for our money, but in due course the operators decided to let us go. That was followed with the highlight in the guise of Frozen (#1930), a beautifully preserved Schwarzkopf City Jet that was discovered by the coaster enthusiast community at Sokolniki Park in 2007. The ride was running as well today as it would have when it left the Schwarzkopf factory in the 1970s, with the track work being completely smooth. The highlight for me was an ascent with strong lateral forces that the two car train negotiated with ease.
VVC Wheel Park
13th July 2013
VVC Wheel Park is located less than two minutes walk away from Attrapark on the right hand side of the main exhibition center entrance. Though only a third of the size of its neighbour, it is the more memorable thanks to a massive ferris wheel and two excellent roller coasters designed by the Pax Company. Only a handful of Pax coasters have been exported outside of Russia, which is a huge shame. Those I've been luckyenoughtoride have been thrilling and intense, and all bar one have been smooth. Pax designers come up with forceful layouts that, from the perspective of this writer, seem far more adventurous than those attempted by other manufacturers.
Our first stop was at Formula (#1931), a Wild Mouse design that I'd come across before at Parc Saint Paul. In my trip report from there I wrote about a mid-course dead spot, but this model didn't use trim brakes which eliminated the problem entirely, resulting in a thrilling ride that we simply had to do a second time. As an aside, it was a treat to see free lockers next to the station platform, something that various large corporate parks would do well to emulate.
The park is also home to Cobra (#1932), a shuttle loop with beyond-vertical spikes painted in a striking pink and yellow colour scheme that once operated at the now-defunct Admiral Vrungel park in Krasnodar. Climbing backwards up the reverse spike felt genuinely frightening, but after the train dropped the rest of the ride was enjoyable if not exactly smooth. It was interesting to note that the train wasn't braked on the return journey, so the front car on the train made it all the way to the top of the loop before reversing and slowing to a stop.
13th July 2013
The third stop of the day was at a large city park located next to the metro station of the same name. The ride area had a good selection of attractions, several of which appeared to be brand new. Pride of place was taken by a Zamperla Air Race, with only the credit whores (and small children) interested in riding the Brucomela (#1933).
13th July 2013
The second Attrapark of the day was found just inside the entrance of Izmaylovski Park, close to Partizanskaya metro station. It was hard to be particularly enthusiastic at the sight of Dragon (#1934), a looping coaster that looked like pain on wheels, a first impression not exactly dispelled by the sight of an operator climbing the lift hill with a large hammer. Much to everyone's relief, however, the ride turned out to be fine if utterly undistinguished. Some of the group also tried the Dark Ride, which was decent if not outstanding. A number of Russian-speaking ghosts had plenty to say as cars moved past them at speed.
13th July 2013
Little Playground is also located within Izmaylovski Park, about thirty minutes walk from Attrapark. It was more than a little irritating to walk all the way across the park to find the Shark Coaster closed for maintenance, but we compensated by having a beer instead.
13th July 2013
The final stop of the day was buried deep within another massive municipal park. Sputnik (#1935) was built by Golden Horse, and was a fun ride if a very noisy one; the train rattled a lot while negotiating the short layout. The highlight for me was a pop of airtime located between two helices that was as startling as it was unexpected. The park also has Indianapolis, a small powered coaster, but it was closed today due to technical problems.