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North Brunswick resident wants to set record by riding Kingda Ka roller coaster

Nick Cromwell thinks, maybe, he is crazy.

“I love roller coasters. I love thrills. I can’t explain why I love this ride so much but to say I rode a ride that goes 456 feet in the air at 128 mph in 3.5 seconds 60 times in one day -maybe I am crazy,” the North Brunswick resident said of his obsession with Kingda Ka at Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson.

The 20-year-old graduate of Middlesex County Vo-Tech in East Brunswick, majoring in digital film, said he goes to Great Adventure approximately once a week, usually on the weekends. He rides Kingda Ka at least five times per visit, with 60 being his one-day record he set on Aug. 29, which he said he plans to beat next season.

Known as the “Bandana Guy” to the workers at Kingda Ka – inspired by his idol Bryce Harper of the Philadelphia Phillies – Cromwell said the longest he ever waited to ride was 4 hours and 42 minutes.

“I never really feel sick. Maybe I’ve just been on it so many times I’ve lost feeling in my head or from head banging to music from the band Korn my head is used to it … all jokes aside … the thrill part of it depends on which row, the front being smooth but windy while the back is bumpy. Sometimes while riding it almost feels like a 9-5 job where I’m just like, ‘Yep I’m doing this once again’ but other times I do still feel the rush or if I’m riding with someone who is scared or hasn’t been on. I do enjoy counting down the launch though,” he said.
One feat he hasn’t achieved is a “rollback,” where the train fails to make it over the top and instead of going forward you roll back down to where you launched.
“The train is designed to safely going back and reshoot. I want it so bad because I think of it as catching a baseball at a game or something in that matter. I just want one,” he said.
With his previous record being 28 rides in one day in 2018, Cromwell is trying to officially secure a record for  “Most Times On A Roller Coaster in One Day.”
“I do consider myself [an adrenaline junkie] and I do enjoy other thrills. One day I’d love to go skydiving and other crazy stunts like that. Life’s short, just have fun. I always say that to myself after I battled Lyme disease back when I was 13 and was two stages away from it being serious,” he said.
He said this wouldn’t be possible without his Kingda Ka friends, Ron, Stephen, Vanessa,  Kim, Dylan and Matthew.
Although Kingda Ka is closed for the season, Cromwell said he plans on riding the open rides during Great Adventure’s Holiday in the Park season.
“I’ve never really tried something like this before but it’s something that is fun each time. It never gets old. I actually was the last train of the season [on Nov. 11] with a final of 17 times that day, 17 being the last one. I do of course plan of doing the same thing next season,” he said.
For more information, visit @officialbandanaguy on Instagram.
Contact Jennifer Amato at jamato@newspapermediagroup.com.
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