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This article is about the episode. You may be looking for the magazine story or the DVD.

“You wouldn't have a problem if you were an express engine. You'd go really fast and get the job done in double-quick time like me! I'll be in time to see the fair/carnival!”

Thomas Tries His Best is the thirteenth episode of the ninth series.


The engines are very busy delivering items to help set up the fair and all are looking forward to it, especially Thomas. However, he is told by the Fat Controller to take some of Farmer McColl's chickens from Dryaw to Brendam Docks. When Thomas arrives at Dryaw, Farmer McColl is not there; his truck has a flat tyre, so Thomas must wait. Then, James arrives and tells Thomas that he could go over to the fair and be back before Farmer McColl turns up. Thomas agrees with James and leaves Dryaw to see the children at the fair.

However, Thomas begins to worry that Farmer McColl might come whilst he is gone or Thomas will be held up by a red signal on the way back, which would make the Fat Controller cross if he is late with the chickens. Thomas puts his job first and reverses back to Dryaw. By the time Farmer McColl arrives at Dryaw with the chickens, it is already evening. Once the chickens are loaded up in his vans, Thomas leaves for Brendam Docks.

At Abbey, Thomas meets Gordon, who tells Thomas that if he goes fast he will be on time to see the fair. So when their signals turn green, Gordon departs with the express, closely followed by Thomas who speeds away. However, Gordon's next signal is green whilst Thomas' is red. Thomas brakes hard and the chickens get very cross. As soon as he stops, Thomas remembers that he was told to go slowly with the chickens, which he does for the rest of the journey. By the time he gets to Brendam Docks, it is already night and Thomas knows he will not be able to go to the fair.

However, Thomas is asked to get a new generator for the fair. Once there, the generator is unloaded and put to work, bringing the fair back to life. Thomas is very happy that, against all the uncertainties, he is at the fair.




  • Going by production order, this is the twentieth episode of the ninth series.
  • A deleted scene is shown in a tenth series interactive segment, Farmer McColl's Farm from Sodor's Special Places in the half-hour airing, Friendship. In the deleted scene, at night, Emily, who was meant to have a larger role, having been to the fair and wanting to help, meets Thomas, who still really wants to go to the fair, at a signal and tells him she would take his train to the farm so he can go. Unaware that the vans are loaded with chickens, Emily speeds away, much to the discomfort of the chickens. Thomas catches up with her, and informs her that the vans contain chickens and tells her that they must go slowly, and thus Emily learns it is better to be slow. The scene may have been cut possibly due to filming time.
  • In the US dub, there is extra dialogue from Thomas while he worries what happens if he was not there when Farmer McColl arrived at Dryaw Station or if the signal held him up on the way back, and that Sir Topham Hatt would be cross if he was late. But in the original UK version, the narrator narrates the latter before Thomas says "I mustn't let the Fat Controller down."
  • The font Matisse ITC is used on the word "cream" underneath the word, "ice," is the same font used in the Japanese CGI-animated kids' show, Popee the Performer.
  • Each member of the Steam Team have a specific job for the fair:
    • Thomas - Pulling the fairground games and bunting.
    • Edward - Pulling the Ferris wheel with Henry.
    • Henry - Pulling the Ferris wheel with Edward.
    • Gordon - Pulling the bandstand, helter skelter and fairground tents.
    • James - Pulling the merry-go-round.
    • Percy - Pulling the bumper cars.
    • Toby - Taking the brass band to the fair.
    • Emily - Pulling the roller coaster.


  • At the beginning, Thomas has Percy's whistle sound, and Gordon has Henry's.


In Other Languages

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Language Title
Brazilian Portuguese Thomas faz seu Maior Esforço
Chinese Mandarin 托马斯尽了全力
Croatian Tomica daje sve od sebe
Czech Tomáš se snaží
Danish Thomas' tivolitur
Dutch Thomas doet zijn best
Finnish Tuomas Tekee Parhaansa
German Thomas tut sein bestes
Greek Ο Τόμας βάζει τα δυνατά του
Hungarian Thomas Mindent Belead
Italian Thomas fa del suo meglio
Japanese いっしょうけんめいなトーマス
Korean 즐거운 놀이공원
Latin American Spanish Thomas Hace su Mejor Esfuerzo
Norwegian Thomas gjør sitt beste
Polish Tomek bardzo się stara
Romanian Thomas își dă Silința
Russian Томас делает всё возможное
Scottish Gaelic Tòmas Dicheallach
Spanish Thomas Hace lo que Puede
Swedish Thomas gör sitt bästa
Turkish Thomas En İyisini Yapıyor

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