Ash, Pikachu and Rotom watch Mallow and Bounsweet practice on balancing a plate of stacked pancakes on its head without letting it fall over. When Ash voices his confusion, Mallow shushes him, saying she is concentrating. When Bounsweet successfully finishes its practice, Mallow explains that they are practicing for the upcoming annual Pokémon Pancake Race, and suggests that Ash join up as well, since the event is a lot of fun and akin to a festival.
Later, while Ash is getting supplies with Professor Kukui, they stop by a café for lunch. Kukui greets the waitress, Nina, remarking that the time for Pancake Race has arrived again after seeing a poster for the event. Ash recognizes Nina as the girl featured on the poster, and Nina introduces her Alolan Raichu to them. Kukui reveals that Nina and Raichu were the champions of the previous race. As Ash marvels Raichu's ability to float, Rotom explains Raichu's Alolan variant to him, pointing out that Alolan Raichu is also a Psychic Pokémon who uses its mind to manipulate electricity and levitate. As Nina and Raichu serve Ash's group two stacks of pancakes, Nina explains that the race's objective is to complete the course without dropping any of the stacked pancakes as failure to do so results in elimination. Ash asks Pikachu to join the race with him and it agrees, but quickly develops a rivalry with Raichu after Raichu snubs it.
Following lunch, Ash practices with Pikachu while assisted by Nina and her Raichu demonstrating. Nearby, Team Rocket are relaxing on the beach when they see Nina's Raichu, prompting James to look up its information. While Raichu easily finishes the practice run, Pikachu is worn out from its efforts, but manages to keep its stack intact. As Nina and Ash discuss the upcoming race, the Team Rocket trio overhear this and recognize Nina and the race from a copy of the publicity poster they picked up. After learning that the winner of the race gets a year's supply of unlimited Alolan pancakes, Jessie becomes determined to enter and win.
The next day, an announcer named Anna broadcasts the race throughout the islands, explaining the rules and racecourse, which is divided into three segments. Trainers will race with their stacks in the first leg while going over several obstacles, then rejoin their Pokémon in the second and pull them along using wagons, before leaving them behind in the third segment where the Pokémon will race alone. In addition to those who drop their pancakes, Pokémon who use attacks to disrupt their opponents will also be disqualified. Ash's classmates all discuss the event, certain of their own victory, as Lillie cheers them on from the stands. Identified as the previous champion, Nina is briefly interviewed; she comments that she wants to have fun and stay safe, so winning isn't a priority for her.
As the race begins, the Trainers all rush ahead, ending up coming across a section of balance beams they have to walk over. Many of them end up falling off, including Sophocles, disqualifying them from the race. Sophocles is briefly startled by a group of Alolan Muk assigned to eat up the fallen pancakes and keep the course clean. The other competitors make it to the second part of the race with Ash, Nina and Jessie among those in the lead, but Jessie is frequently distracted by Mimikyu trying to attack Pikachu due to its grudge. From the stands, Rotom notices that Samson Oak is racing with a Komala and brings up its information. James wheels along a Bewear, revealed to be Meowth and Wobbuffet riding in a robot so they can speed along in the final leg; frustrated from his payload, James insinuates that Meowth and Wobbuffet have been putting on weight after living the good life in Bewear's den. Kiawe discovers that Turtonator is far too heavy to pull along on its wagon; after collapsing, Kiawe laments that he and his partner aren't meant for Pokémon pancake racing. Left behind with the other Pokémon whose Trainers have been eliminated, Togedemaru is unhappy with Sophocles as he catches up to it and attacks Sophocles for his failure.
In the last section of the race, the Pokémon make their way across a bridge as their Trainers return to the stands to watch their progress. Without Jessie to keep it in line, Mimikyu prepares another Shadow Ball to attack Pikachu with, but Bounsweet loses its balances and topples into Mimikyu, causing both their pancakes to drop; Mimikyu's misfired attack ends up popping Popplio's water balloon holding its pancakes, ruining its stack as well. Mallow and Lana are disappointed while Jessie is infuriated at Mimikyu.
The remaining competitors - Meowth, Pikachu, Raichu and Komala - race across rocky terrain, with Meowth struggling to keep the robot steady. Spurred on by Raichu's smug behavior, Pikachu pushes itself to go faster, ending up neck and neck with Raichu and tying for the lead. Exhausted from the stuffy costume of the Robo-Racer, Meowth decides to activate its thrusters, sending the robot racing ahead and overtaking Pikachu and Raichu. Before Meowth can cross the finish line, Bewear shows up and retrieves Meowth and Wobbuffet, destroying the Robo-Racer and revealing its true nature to the onlookers, before picking up Jessie and James and running away. Everyone is stunned at the sight, including Pikachu and Raichu, inadvertently allowing Samson Oak's Komala to race ahead of them. The two Mouse Pokémon realize this, but are seconds too late as Komala ends up winning by a nose, with Pikachu and Raichu both tying for second place.
At a prize-giving ceremony, Ash and Rotom congratulate Pikachu for its efforts. Raichu is upset that it lost, but Nina consoles it, reminding it that it had fun and could compete for first place next year. The other Trainers console their Pokémon as well, while Mallow suggests to Lillie she could race the following year with the Pokémon that hatches from the Egg she was given. Ash notes that Kiawe is nowhere to be seen; the scene cuts away to Kiawe and Turtonator, having made no visible progress. Despite Turtonator's concern, Kiawe swears not to drop out of the race.
The next day, Lillie calls to everyone to gather, explaining that the Egg, which she nicknamed "Snowy", has been moving constantly since after the race. Her classmates watch on as the Egg glows brightly, then hatches into an Alolan Vulpix, closing the episode.