The show begins with a reporter reporting about the Wallace Cup, saying that many people around the world are anxious to watch the spectacular contest.May, Dawn, Munchlax and Piplup are eating a giant cookie. Dawn looks quite worried while holding the cookie. Brock expresses his feelings to the cookie vendor, which is of course an attractive female, and ends up with a Poison Jab from Croagunk to the gut and being pulled away by Croagunk. May then jokingly says that Croagunk has taken over for her brother, Max, in keeping Brock in his place.
When Ash has finished registering for the Wallace Cup, Zoey appears with the intention of also entering the contest. She is surprised to see Ash entering as well, and she commented that to be a great Coordinator, one must know both the Pokémon Contests and Pokémon Battles.
Brock, Dawn and May come to greet her and Dawn introduces May to Zoey.At night, Jessie is also planning to enter the Wallace Cup, and wants James and Meowth to help her. However, James and Meowth refused and told her that the last contests she won were all dependent on her efforts, not through their help. Jessie then looks blankly at them and her Wobbuffet comes out as comic relief.
The next day, the Wallace Cup has started. James makes a comment that many of the people in the audience are found to be wearing Wallace's hat.
Meanwhile, Dawn is frantically brushing her hair while Piplup stares at her. She is very nervous that her hair refusing to stay down will cause problems. May decides to help out by brushing her hair as Piplup gives her what is most obviously a speech to keep her going and fired up. We then see three of our known competitors in their chosen outfits: May wearing some an Arabian style ensemble, Dawn wearing her usual contest clothes, and Zoey sporting a smart dress.The contest starts with a TV showing Wallace holding the Wallace Ribbon. The arena consists of a big pool of water. Water spurts out to the air, and a Milotic appears. The Milotic then splashes huge waves onto the stage immediately followed by Wallace appearing beautifully on stage. Wallace stretches out his left hand and thanks the audience for coming here to witness the contest. The audience cheers as more water spurts out around the stage.
Ash and his friends are awe struck from the Wallace's extravagant entrance. Jessie's (or Jeselina) eyes sparkle in admiration. Then the hostess introduces the judges to be the usual three judges again: President of Pokémon Fan Club with his 'remarkable' gag, Mr.Contesta, and Nurse Joy with Wallace as the guest fourth judge. Then the hostess shows off the Wallace Ribbon, and the Ribbon Cup for those who win the Wallace Cup. Nurse Joy begins to blush when Wallace sits down next to her.May starts off first and release her newly evolved Pokémon, Wartortle, which was previously her baby Squirtle. Dawn while spectating uses her Pokédex to check out the descriptions of Wartortle. Meanwhile, Max calls his parents to watch May's performance in Hoenn. Drew and Harley are also watching. May commands Wartortle to use Rapid Spin on the water, bouncing it along the surface of the water, splashing water towards the audience causing it to cheer. Wartortle then uses Aqua Tail, sending a spinning vortex into the air. Dawn squeezes harder on Piplup, clutching it uncomfortably against her chest, showing signs of nervousness. Wartortle lands on its tail, does a back flip and fluidly lands on his feet. The judges praise her, and Wallace enjoys it, saying that the Water-moves were beautiful. A brief montage of nameless players ensues showing of their own contest prowess. We now come to Jessie's (Jesselina's) turn. Jessie releases her Wobbuffet who does a less than graceful landing, but somehow the audience still cheers. Wobbuffet use Counter, accidentally hits Jessie, sending her flying high up into the air. The crowd stares in amazement, James, Meowth and Mime Jr. look on with a stunned expression, Ash and his friends also Just keep staring in disbelief. Jessie then comes crashing down onto Wobbuffet much to the disapproval of the audience and the judges, neither of which are impressed. Next is Zoey's turn. She sends out her new Pokémon, Finneon, also known as the Beautifly of the sea. Finneon uses Silver Wind sending a shimmering gust across the water. Finneon then uses Safeguard creating a spectacular shine reflected in the water surface. Finneon then uses Waterfall which creates a large torrent to rise out of the water's surface. Finneon then travels up the water in a spiral fashion,leaps up above and shines dazzlingly . Dawn hugs her Piplup harder as her nerves and tension rise after seeing Zoey's performance.
The judges then praise Zoey, as we see Piplup is suffering in pain because of Dawn's vice-like hug. Dawn quickly realizes what she is doing and apologizes to Piplup, seeing her acting strangely Dawn's friends come to see if she is alright..Next is Ash's turn. He appears wearing a black formal suit with a matching black hat. He sends out his Buizel, which upon release attacks the lightning bolts that are formed because of the seal on it's Poké Ball creating a grand entrance. Buizel first uses Aqua Jet on the water to show off its speed and power. Buizel then brakes by using the air sac around its neck, resulting in a complete stop. Next, Buizel uses Sonicboom while underwater to propel itself out into the air. It then uses Water Gun in the air and splashes the water towards the judges, the water disperses into a glittering mist. After Ash has performed, Paul having watched him on TV comments: "What does he think he is doing?"
Dawn is up next and we see her nerves are at a max as she frantically checks her hair in the mirror. Brock, May and Zoey then try to encourage her as Piplup begins getting angry. seeing her act afraid, Piplup scolds her and fires bubblebeam at her face and finally succeeds in calming her down. She clasps her hand together with Ash as she goes onto the stage.Dawn enters the stage but falters a little as she becomes nervous before releasing her Ambipom. Dawn's mother and Kenny are shown watching her performance. Ambipom uses Double Hit in succession with Swift onto the water. Then it uses Focus Punch onto the river causing water to splash against the wall. James, Meowth and Mime Jr. are caught in the splash zone and become completely soaked. The judges praise her and Wallace comments that she had showcased Ambipom's power, techniques and cuteness very well.
Jessie lies to the remaining members of the team by saying she had done well. James and Meowth knowing the true results just reply "Right". Ash and his friends praise Dawn on her great performance.
The judges make their decision revealing that Ash, Zoey, Dawn and May have passed the 1st round. Jessie did not pass the 1st round, and turns into ash from dissapointment. Dawn is very happy that she made it to the second round.
The second round will be held the next day and all the friends are now rivals.
- Two girls near the beginning of the episode look like Sakura Kinomoto and Tomoyo Daidōji from Cardcaptor Sakura. This is most likely a joke on how their hats resemble the one Wallace wears.
- This is the second Contest in a row that Ambipom's Poké Ball almost slips out of Dawn's hand due to her nervousness.
- When Croagunk drags Brock away from the woman selling crepes, May's gloves disappear.
- When Meowth and James show their displeasure at Jessie's performance there is a sound indicating a Pokémon coming out of its Ball, despite Mime Jr. already being outside its Ball.