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An enthusiastic young Teapot Racer

The Steampunk sport of Teapot Racing started in New Zealand in 2014, but has since gained popularity elsewhere. We are lucky to have a number of dedicated enthusiasts in the UK, including the wonderful teapot wizards who run teapot racing at Ministry of Steampunk events, where they are responsible for entertaining steampunks and bemused onlookers alike. 

The basic idea of Teapot Racing is simple enough. Some kind of teapot (or representation of a teapot) is mounted onto the chassis of a remote-controlled vehicle and the teapot is then (usually) driven around an obstacle course created for that purpose. 

To make it more fun, the race is usually done against the clock and penalties may be awarded for mistakes, such as failing to follow the course correctly, knocking things over or the teapot becomes stuck.


In case of difficulty, bribery of the judges is not unknown (biscuits work well). 

Medals or other prizes may be awarded for the fastest times around a particular course and for the fun of it the driver responsible for the slowest lap is sometimes awarded the 'Tea Cosy of Doom'. 

A selection of Racing Teapots

As you would expect with such a serious endeavour as Teapot Racing, various sets of rules have been developed over the years, but those used by the teapot wizards at MoS events tend to err on the side of friendliness and inclusion, with lighthearted fun being the general rule of the day.  

You can check out the British Teapot Racers Group on Facebook for lots more information on the subject. 

The Thrill of the Win!

The Ministry of Steampunk have also hosted one or two other Teapot Racing features, including a promenade of Racing Teapots taking place before the Uniform Parade on Sunday morning at the Asylum festival. 

Also at Asylum we have hosted the Teapot Hill Climb in which motorised teapots compete to see who can drive furthest up a grassy slope.


One of the MoS 'Awards for Creativity' is awarded to the maker of the 'Best Teapot'. This was won in 2023 by Chad Chadwick for 'Potshot' (see below).

Potshot - winner of the 2023 Asylum
Best Teapot Creativity Award

The Tea Cosy of Doom

So if you see Teapot Racing on the programme at a Steampunk event, come along and take a look. You may well be able to have a go yourself, even win a prize. And before you know it, you could be building your own Teapot Racer at home!

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