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Next Episode: Episode 68

Episode 67: Record Red

James is waiting for Thomas and Percy to bring him coal, but decides to use Henry's coal instead, leading to trouble with Sir Topham Hatt in the end.


  • Thomas (minor role)
  • Edward
  • James
  • Oliver
  • Emily
  • Molly
  • Sir Topham Hatt
  • Henry (does not speak)
  • Gordon (cameo)
  • Percy (cameo)
  • Donald or Douglas (cameo)
  • Annie, Brittany, and Clarabel (cameo)
  • Martha and Jennifer (cameo)


Narrator: James was huffing and puffing impatiently. The coal bunkers were empty, and James had been waiting a long time for Thomas and Percy to arrive with some more supplies. His driver looked at his watch.

James' driver: We can't stay here much longer! Our passengers will be waiting!

James: I can't be late!

Narrator: James looked over to a truck that was filled with coal bags. It gave him an idea.

James: I know - we can use some of that coal, then we can be on time!

James' driver: But that's Henry's special coal!

Narrator: Despite Henry being filled with steam following his scrapyard accident, Sir Topham Hatt was worried that Henry still wouldn't cope with ordinary coal. So, he decided to keep the Welsh coal, and decided to use it for Henry's use only. It works for Henry, but it made some of the other engines jealous, James especially.

James: Bother Henry and his "special treatment"! I'm late enough as it is! I'm sure he won't mind!

James' driver: Well, have it your way then.

Narrator: So the fireman picked up four bags of Welsh coal, and put them into James' tender. It look a while, but soon his boiler was bubbling. Edward arrived to shunt trucks. He had a message for James. It was from Sir Topham Hatt.

Edward: Thomas and Percy are going to be late. There is some sheep on the tracks, so you're going to have to wait even longer for your coal! Sorry about this!

James: Too late - I've used some of Henry's coal!

Edward: But that coal is not for engines like us!

James: {snorts} You worry too much!

Narrator: And he chuffed grandly away. James collected his coaches, and he raced along to pick up his waiting passengers.

James: This is special coal!

NWR Coaches: Do slow down! Do slow down!

James: Do come along! Do come along!

Narrator: But there was a red signal up ahead, but James couldn't stop in time, and he raced right through it!

James: I hope I can show someone how fast I can go!

Narrator: And he did.

James: {races past Oliver} Watch me! I can go really fast!

'Oliver: Rail raider!

Narrator: Then, he raced past Molly.

Molly: Bubbling boilers!

Narrator: James raced across Sodor.

James' driver: You're going even faster than Gordon! We should call you "Red Express".

Narrator: James was pleased with his speed. He forgot to slow down at the next station, and shot right through it, which made the passengers cross.

Passengers: We want to get on that train!

Narrator: But also, James had also forgot about something else - he forgot to let some of the passengers off inside the carriages. And they were not having fun either. They were having the bumpiest, bounciest ride they ever had. That evening, James pulled into Knapford. Sir Topham Hatt was waiting for him. He did not look happy at all!

Sir Topham Hatt: James! Explain yourself! You are a very foolish engine!

James: But- But I did break a record, sir!

Sir Topham Hatt: Never mind that, you didn't stop at the signal, or the station! And you put your passengers in grave danger!

Narrator: James gasped! He had spent so much time racing around, he had forgotten about his passengers. He felt very embarrassed. Just then, Edward pulled in, with the passengers James had forgot to pick up. He pulled slowly into the station. All of Edward's passengers arrived safely at the passengers, but James' were so bumped about, and were so dizzy, they could hardly stand up!

Edward: {laughs} Well, well, James! How does it feel to be called "Red Express" or "Record Red" now? Do you still want to use Henry's coal from now on?

James: No, not anymore. I think I'll stick to my own coal from now on, and leave the special coal for Henry. And I'll always be careful with passengers. But, does that still give me my pride?

Thomas: No, it doesn't!

Emily: But it also makes you a loser!

{Thomas and Emily laugh cheekily.}

Narrator: James' face went as red as his paintwork.


Fun Facts

Episode 1 is referred to. This story is adapted from a story on a Thomas magazine which came out in a classic story collection in summer 2008.

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