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4 May 2020

Rebecca Thomas Flying High After Her Win in Heat Five of the Furlong Factor

We saw some brilliant performances in last night’s heat five of Racing Welfare’s Furlong Factor and the standard of singers remained exceptionally high.  It was Rebecca Thomas, from Bridgend in South Wales, who came out on top with her stunning version of Birdy’s Wings.

Rebecca, who is 26, has been involved with racing her whole life and, as well as working in a care home, she also works alongside her Grandmother who trains Arabian horses.  Rebecca had some fantastic support on social media from across the industry, particularly from the Arabian Racing community.

Rebecca was thrilled to win her heat and said   


I just want to say a massive thank you to all of you who voted for me last night.  I’m really shocked! The amount of support I received was unbelievable really, I didn’t expect to get through if I’m honest, so thank you all so much. I also want to say a massive well done to all the other competitors, there has been some amazing talent in this competition over the last few days, so well done everyone. I want everyone to remember the reason this competition is going ahead, to donate to Racing Welfare’s Covid-19 Appeal. Thank you all again and I guess I will  see you in the final!

Watch Rebecca’s reaction to her win

JJ Hamblett, a former jockey and member of X-Factor finalists, Union J, who is the celebrity commentator for the competition, said:


I loved Rebecca’s version of Birdy’s Wings, she had such a beautiful and refreshing tone to her voice, a massive well done to her for winning another competitive heat.  I can’t wait to see who the voters pick as their favourite tonight. It is going to be incredibly tough to choose the overall winner on Saturday.

The final heat of the competition takes place tonight at 8 pm on Racing Welfare’s Twitter and Facebook pages. All of the contestants are vying to win the £1,500 cash prize and an all-expenses-paid trip to the Qatar Prix De L’Arc De Triomphe.

The heat stages conclude tonight with a stellar line up from across the racing industry.  The contenders include ex-jockey and BHA Steward, Fergus Sweeney.  Fergus is originally from Northern Ireland and retired from race riding last November having ridden over 1,000 winners worldwide, he gives us a brilliant rendition of David Gray’s The One I love.  Lucy Barry, a dual-purpose jockey and National Hunt manager for the Melbourne 10 syndicate, provides us with a stunning performance of the Labrinth hit Jealous.  Lee Davies, a Scrum Master for the Tote, unveils his hidden singing talent with his great version of Gabrielle’s Rise. Completing the heat we have another jockey. Lizzie Kelly is a National Hunt jockey from Devon and was the first female jockey to win a Grade One race in Britain.  Lizzie sings the beautiful song, originally performed by Alicia Keys, If I Ain’t Got You.

The winners of each heat will progress to the live Furlong Factor Final which will be broadcast on Sky Sports Racing on Saturday 9th May.  In the run-up to the final racing fans will have the opportunity to back their favourite contestants through the Tote, before the winner of the Furlong Factor 2020 is announced.  Funds raised by Tote bets will be donated to Racing Welfare’s Covid-19 Emergency Appeal.

You can support Racing Welfare now by going to justgiving.com/RWEmergencyAppeal.