What it’s really like on Disney World’s new rollercoaster – the sci-fi thriller TRON Lightcycle/Run

IT might have taken Mickey Mouse 50 years – but the future has finally arrived at his Walt Disney World home in Florida.

That’s the only way you can explain the dazzling blue-and-white monument that is the new TRON: Lightcycle/Run ride in the fabled Magic Kingdom.

DisneyWorld's brand new TRON: Lightcycle/Run ride takes you on a thrilling journey through the Tron Universe


DisneyWorld’s brand new TRON: Lightcycle/Run ride takes you on a thrilling journey through the Tron Universe
Adventure seekers are in lean-forward motor-bike position for the duration of the 2 minute ride


Adventure seekers are in lean-forward motor-bike position for the duration of the 2 minute ride

Into the world of pirates, princesses and castles comes a genuine sci-fi thriller that definitively puts the “tomorrow” in Tomorrowland, an epic journey through the Grid of the two TRON films.

At its heart is a humdinger of a rollercoaster, dressed up in the vivid blue livery of the computer-generated movie realm it aims to recreate.

It’s a unique premise, as the ride vehicles are shaped like the futuristic motorbikes raced by Jeff Bridges in the original 1982 film — that bombed at the box office but became a cult hit anyway, paving the way for the successful follow-up TRON: Legacy in 2010.

In the best tradition of Disney rides, visitors are “digitised” to enter the Grid, only to find themselves in a mortal battle against deadly Team Orange, who await allcomers on the trademark high-speed lightcycles. Cue some seriously fast action.

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As Team Blue, riders are blasted into the Master Program to race along-side the villainous orange crew.

It’s a life-or-death, twisting, turn-ing dash to the finish line, with the outcome in doubt right up until the final swoosh.

The coaster hits a top speed of 60mph — which feels more like 160mph because of the fast-launch style — and rockets into a wildly swooping open-air section before diving back into the main building to be surrounded by flashing video screens, pulsating lights and a kicking soundtrack.

Riders are in lean-forward motor-bike position for the duration of the ride, thanks to safety restraints on the legs and back.

But there is also a more standard car for people with disabilities or mobility issues.

Movie soundtrack composer Joseph Trapanese, who collaborated with Daft Punk for the score to TRON: Legacy, has been recruited to provide a new sound for the attract-ion. This delivers a pounding beat throughout, ensuring a completely immersive experience.

As is tradition in Florida, there is also a tempting gift shop on the way out, stacked with super-cool merch such as personally customised action figures and light-up accessories inspired by the films.

50th anniversary

The only question-mark one can maybe raise against the new coaster is that the ride feels just a touch short at barely two minutes from start to finish.

But it packs a LOT into the all-action experience, and one ride may not be quite enough to see every-thing on your wonderful whizz through the Grid.

The new ride is a fitting finale to Walt Disney World’s long-running 50th anniversary celebrations, which conclude at the end of this month.

It’s the first all-new attraction in the Magic Kingdom in almost ten years and should ensure the crowds keep on coming to Tomorrowland.

The House of Mouse is adding new elements to its other theme parks, too, with Disney’s Hollywood Studios in line for a tasty boost later on this month.

Opening on Thursday next week, the Roundup Rodeo BBQ will offer some seriously succulent barbecue fare in Toy Story Land, and it should be a mouthwatering new option if our preview this week is anything to judge by.

With four different smoked meats and three equally appetising plant-based choices, the place is likely to build up quite a barbe-queue once people get a whiff of all that smoky goodness.

Even the side dishes are impressive — by the way: the Mac & Cheese and Buckin’ Baked Beans are both must-try items.

Those with a sweet tooth should also look out for the Cake Bake Shop at Disney’s Boardwalk Resort later this year, with a truly delicious array of pastries and other delights, plus some cool cocktails.

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Finally, Disney’s EPCOT park will be home to a series of new attractions this autumn.

These include the walk-through Journey of Water, inspired by Moana, as well as a spectacular new pyro-technics show, and a novel character experience with Mickey and Co.

GO: Orlando

GETTING / STAYING THERE: Seven nights’ room-only at Disney’s All-Star Music Resort is from £1,307 per person, based on two adults and two children under nine sharing, including return direct flights with Virgin Atlantic on June 15 and Disney 7-Day Magic Tickets.

To book, visit disneyholidays.co.uk or call 0800 169 0737.

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