Caitlyn survives big X Factor first

A SINGLE glimpse Monday night into how the public has been voting on this year's X Factor is a call to arms for fans of Gympie contestant Caitlyn Shadbolt.

Caitlyn endured a nervous wait on stage as the X Factor race dropped another contestant in 16-year-old Sydney Carter.

An X Factor Australia first, safe contestants were read out in order of the popular vote.

From seven safe contestants, Caitlyn came in at sixth.

The revelation of how the public voted this past week is a reminder to not become complacent.

Proud mother Helen hit the airwaves with a 4GY guest appearance last week and has been drumming up support online.

"We really need to remind people to vote," Helen said.

"Who knows how many votes were separating the acts (Monday night)."

Brothers3 left mentor Dannii Minogue shocked and grinning broadly as they were announced the top act in the popularity stakes.

They were followed by Dean Ray, Reigan Derry, Rochelle Pitt and Marlisa Punzalan.

Carter's exit was a narrow miss for Jason Heerah, who also landed in the bottom two.

It was not clear which act had in fact received the lowest tally of votes - a piece of information that only could have been revealed had the judges' votes ended in deadlock.

Caitlyn's family watched both the live and elimination shows from home this week but will be returning to Sydney this weekend.

"We are going down with family and friends," Helen said.

"Back to the big smoke to be there to support Caitlyn."

Before Monday's live verdict got down to business, a group performance of The Pointer Sisters' classic Jump (For My Love) set the tone for the night.

The Top 9 were asked to nominate a theme for the group performance and among the fireworks, showgirls and a request to be a lizard, Caitlyn contributed with her love for pizza.

She didn't get to eat pizza, but dancing pizza slices were a great compromise on stage.

Caitlyn again performs Sunday night and after transforming Lady Gaga's single You and I last week, the stakes could not be higher.

Tune in to Channel 7 from 6.30pm Sunday.

Vote tally

AN X Factor Australia first, votes Monday night were revealed in order:

1. Brothers3

2. Dean Ray

3. Reigan Derry

4. Rochelle Pitt

5. Marlisa Punzalan

6. Caitlyn Shadbolt

7. Tee

Gympie Times

Topics:  caitlyn shadbolt country music reality tv x factor

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