Would You Ride This Crazy Student-Made Roller Coaster?

The Reverse Cowgirl, designed by university students, "dropped its riders vertically, then turned them face down as they skimmed 2 feet above the ground, face down and strapped with their backs to the cart". Suddenly Six Flags seems so safe.

The Cowgirl, built for some kind of college rush event, is both really impressive and really terrifying. Look at it! Whenever I'm on a real roller coaster, I always reassure myself that professionals are responsible for designing, constructing, and monitoring these things and figure that thousands of people have been on them before me without incident. Can't really do that with this one.

This photo is ominously captured:

The cart in motion (the rider is hidden underneath)

Underneath!? Yikes. But from a Flickr comment presumably left by one of the students involved with the homebrew coaster, it sounds like someone either ended up a pancake in one of the first runs or saw the potential for danger in a complicated wooden rollercoaster built by a bunch of 20-year-olds and shut it down:

It was not a fail.. It had 20 people ride it. Sure, not 200, but you try building a roller coaster that complex in a week.

No, no, that's OK. I'm happy to be the guy who swirls those sticks around in the fairy floss machine. [Flickr via Make]

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