Rachel Mendes da Costa, from Middlesex, was the first female contestant (and second overall) to appear on the the UK version of the show and worldwide on 4-5 September, 1998. She was also the first ever contestant to use the "Ask the Audience" lifeline and the first to use any lifeline before the second milestone question. She walked away with £8,000.


Fastest Finger First Edit

Fastest Finger First Question
Which singer's only UK No. 1 hit was "Wherever I Lay My Hat" in 1983?
• A: Joe Cocker • B: Paul Young
• C: Elvis Costello • D: Damian
From the 9 remaining contestants, 7 got it right, but Rachel (with a time of 0.69 seconds) was the fastest to correctly answer B: Paul Young, making it into the Hot Seat.

Rachel's Run to the Million Edit

£100 (1 of 15) - Not Timed
If you are in your "birthday suit", what are you wearing?
• A: Your best clothes • B: Your work clothes
• C: A nappy • D: Nothing

£200 (2 of 15) - Not Timed
As what did Dr. Crippen find fame earlier this century?
• A: Surgeon • B: Murderer
• C: Dentist • D: Psychologist

£300 (3 of 15) - Not Timed
At what temperature on the Centigrade scale does water boil?
• A: Zero degrees • B: 32 degrees
• C: 100 degrees • D: 212 degrees

£500 (4 of 15) - Not Timed
Who was Bonnie's famous partner in crime?
• A: Langford • B: Clyde
• C: James • D: Butch
The klaxon called time and Rachel would return the next day on £500 with all 3 lifelines still available.

£1,000 (5 of 15) - Not Timed
Which fish, spelt backwards, gives the name of one of the Seven Dwarves?
• A: Pike • B: Cod
• C: Haddock • D: Eel

£2,000 (6 of 15) - Not Timed
What is an abacus?
• A: A counting device • B: A bird
• C: A female abbot • D: A tree

£4,000 (7 of 15) - Not Timed
What is the name of the cafe owner played by Humphrey Bogart in 'Casablanca'?
'50:50' and 'Ask The Audience' lifelines used.
• A: Sam • B: Kyle
• C: Jack • D: Rick
Ask the Audience Results: A: 31% • B: 0% • C: 0% • D: 69%
This marked the first use of the 'Ask the Audience' lifeline as Graham Elwell did not use it in the first episode.

£8,000 (8 of 15) - Not Timed
What is the most common bird of prey found in the United Kingdom?
• A: Kestrel • B: Red Kite
• C: Golden Eagle • D: Barn Owl

£16,000 (9 of 15) - Not Timed
Which English county has a border with only one other?
'Phone-a-Friend' lifeline used.
• A: Devon • B: Norfolk
• C: Cornwall • D: Kent
Rachel wasn't sure, so she phoned her father John, who advised her to walk away as he too didn't know the answer.


  • For unknown reasons, the £100-£1,000 question soundtrack did not play during Rachel's first 4 questions; however, it did play during the £1,000 question. It is worth noting that her first 4 questions were played just before the klaxon called time.


Preceded by
Graham Elwell
U.K. Contestant (Season 1)
Rachel da Costa
Succeeded by
Arlene Harper

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