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Thomas and Bertie, retitled Thomas and Bertie's Great Race in American releases, is the fourteenth episode of the first season. In the US, it aired on the Shining Time Station episodes Agree to Disagree in 1989 and Field Day in 1991.
Thomas is waiting at a junction when a bus drives up alongside him. The bus introduces himself as Bertie, who remembers Thomas from the time he took his passengers home after Thomas crashed into a snowdrift and tells Thomas that he has come to help his passengers today. Thomas claims that he can go faster than Bertie. Bertie then challenges Thomas to a race. Their drivers agree and Thomas and Bertie begin their race.
As it takes Thomas a while to build up speed, Bertie draws in front at the beginning of the race until he reaches the level crossing, where Thomas passes him and takes the lead. After that the road leaves the railway and Thomas stops at the next station to collect passengers. He tells them to get in quickly and as he starts off again, he sees Bertie zooming over the bridge and retaking the lead. Thomas tries to catch up, but he has to stop at the next station. Bertie continues on gleefully and Thomas now feels sure that he will lose the race, but he feels better after a drink and starts off once more.
While crossing the river bridge, Thomas finds that he still has a chance to win seeing that Bertie is waiting on a traffic light. As Bertie starts again, Thomas reaches full speed and takes the lead as he passes Bertie at the tunnel and makes it to the last station, winning the race. Everyone celebrates Thomas' victory, but they also give Bertie a big cheer. Bertie congratulates Thomas and tells him that to beat him over that hill, he would have to grow wings and be an aeroplane.
The two friends often talk about their race, but Bertie's passengers do not like to be bounced like peas in a frying pan and the Fat Controller warns Thomas not to race at dangerous speeds. Although it does not seem likely the two will ever race again, secretly Thomas and Bertie would like to again some day.
- Annie and Clarabel
- Mrs. Kyndley (cameo)
- The Storyteller (cameo)
- Terence (mentioned)
- Sir Topham Hatt (mentioned)
- River Els
- The Windmill
- Terence's Field
- Hackenbeck Tunnel
- Knapford Bus Yard
- Rail Under Road Bridge and Signalbox
- Lower Arlesburgh
- This episode is based on the story of the same name from The Railway Series book, Tank Engine Thomas Again.
- Stock footage from Thomas and Gordon and Thomas and the Guard is used.
- A reference to Thomas, Terence and the Snow is made.
- The shot of Thomas passing the windmill was featured in the show's original opening.
- The episode can be seen in a Japanese game, Magical Adventure.
- At one point, Thomas is on Toby's old tramway.
- In the deleted shot, when Thomas and Bertie were pulling into the station, Bertie swerved to far to the right and ran over some people figures.
- At the beginning of the episode, Thomas' boiler is chipped.
- When Thomas and Bertie are about to start their race, in the bottom left corner of the screen, a camera shadow can be seen.
- Thomas has Percy's tired face mask on when he puffs into Elsbridge.
- The narrator says "...the road left the railway..." but there is a road right next to Thomas.
- The plane seen taking off as Thomas and his coaches leave Dryaw suddenly stops moving before they have passed the camera.
- In a close-up of Bertie, he has no driver.
- In the shot of Thomas racing past Lower Arlesburgh, the end of the set is visible in the background. Also, Thomas is on Toby's Branchline.
- In the shot of Thomas entering the tunnel, in the top left corner, studio equipment can be seen.
- Annie and Clarabel keep changing position throughout the race.
- In the restored version, studio equipment can be seen when Thomas pulls into Ffarquhar after the race.
- In a close-up of Thomas, we can see a camera capture on his coupling.
- The narrator says Bertie was fuming at the gates, but Bertie looks happy.
- Because stock footage is used, sometimes Annie and Clarabel are not behind Thomas.
- A rare picture of Thomas passing Bertie on the Elsbridge Viaduct shows the end of the set on the far left.
- When Thomas stops at Elsbridge, he passes the end of the platform, but when he is drinking water, he has moved backwards.
- When people gather around Thomas and Bertie, there are a ton of people in front of Bertie, but in the next scene they're gone.
- In the final scene, studio equipment can be seen in the top left corner.
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