The summer's biggest sports event has begun - at last.

No, not the Olympics, the Paralympics or the start of the football season: the FIRA RoboWorld Cup.

That's right - the world's most prestigious sporting tournament for mechanical beings.

This year - for the first time - the FIRA RoboWorld Cup is being held in the UK. After bidding to host the event, Bristol and the Bristol Robotics Laboratory won the chance to host the plenet's greatest robotic athletes.

Twenty-seven teams will compete in climbing, weightlifting, football, sprinting and a marathon, and the contest will include British teams for the first time.

The At-Bristol centre said that the humanoid robots involved in football, basketball, wall climbing, weightlifting and marathon running can be up to 130cm in height and weigh up to 30kg.

Representing the UK are teams from the Bristol Robotics Laboratory and the University of Plymouth.

Other competitors have travelled from Brazil, Canada, China and India to test their robots against the best in the world. In all 202 participants will be involved.

The contest was founded in 1996, and Dr Guido Herrmann, from the University of Bristol, said it will prove a draw for tourists:

"We are looking forward to welcoming teams from around the world to Bristol. The competition promises to be both exciting and insightful, pushing the boundaries of robotics to the limit.

"This will be a fantastic opportunity for the public to see just what autonomous robots are capable of. Although very different to the Olympics, it's another opportunity to show the world just what Great Britain is capable of - both as event hosts and being pioneers of engineering."

The competition lasts until the 25 August and members of the public are welcome to attend.

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  • FIRA International RoboWorldCup

    A robot competes in the weightlifting at the FIRA International RoboWorldCup.

  • FIRA International RoboWorldCup

    Plymouth University's robots at the FIRA International RoboWorldCup.

  • FIRA International RoboWorldCup

    Teams from Taiwan and South Korea compete in the Robosot at the FIRA International RoboWorldCup taking place for the first time in the UK at At-Bristol.

  • FIRA International RoboWorldCup

    Plymouth University's robots at the FIRA International RoboWorldCup taking place for the first time in the UK at At-Bristol. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday August 22, 2012. The international competition includes climbing, weightlifting, football, sprinting and a marathon, and is taking place for the first time in the UK. The Plymouth team is the first UK squad to enter.

  • FIRA International RoboWorldCup

    Teams from Taiwan and South Korea compete in the Robosot at the FIRA International RoboWorldCup taking place for the first time in the UK at At-Bristol.

  • NETHERLANDS-ROBOCUP-FESTIVAL

    The Chinese robot football team 'Water' plays against the Dutch team 'Tech United' during the final match of the international robot football tournament RoboCup, in Eindhoven, June 30, 2013. 'Water' won the Cup by defeating Tech United. AFP PHOTO / ANP / JOYCE VAN BELKOM **NETHERLANDS OUT** (Photo credit should read Joyce van Belkom/AFP/Getty Images)

  • NETHERLANDS-ROBOCUP-FESTIVAL

    The Dutch robot-football team Tech United plays against Portugal during the semi finals of the so-called 'RoboCup', an international robot festival, in Eindhoven, on June 30, 2013. The Dutch team defeated the Portugese team Cambada. AFP PHOTO / ANP JOYCE VAN BELKOM netherlands out - belgium out (Photo credit should read Joyce van Belkom/AFP/Getty Images)

  • DOUNIAMAG-NETHERLANDS-TECHNOLOGY-ROBOTS

    Robots play a match on the first day of the robot-football world championships held as part of the RoboCup, an international robot festival, on June 27, 2013 in Eindhoven. AFP PHOTO/ANP JOYCE VAN BELKOM (Photo credit should read Joyce van Belkom/AFP/Getty Images)

  • DOUNIAMAG-NETHERLANDS-TECHNOLOGY-ROBOTS

    Robots play a match on the first day of the robot-football world championships held as part of the RoboCup, an international robot festival, on June 27, 2013 in Eindhoven. AFP PHOTO/ANP JOYCE VAN BELKOM (Photo credit should read Joyce van Belkom/AFP/Getty Images)

  • DOUNIAMAG-NETHERLANDS-TECHNOLOGY-ROBOTS

    Robots play a match on the first day of the robot-football world championships held as part of the RoboCup, an international robot festival, on June 27, 2013 in Eindhoven. AFP PHOTO/ANP JOYCE VAN BELKOM (Photo credit should read Joyce van Belkom/AFP/Getty Images)

  • NETHERLANDS-TECHNOLOGY-ROBOTS

    A girl prepares a robot ahead of a match on the first day of the robot-football world championships held as part of the RoboCup, an international robot festival, on June 27, 2013 in Eindhoven. AFP PHOTO/ANP JOYCE VAN BELKOM (Photo credit should read Joyce van Belkom/AFP/Getty Images)

  • A goalkeeper robot in action during a te

    A goalkeeper robot in action during a test before the RoboCup 2011 in Istanbul, on July 7, 2011. RoboCup is the largest and most prestigious robotics event and a showcase for artificial intelligence and intelligent robotics research. AFP PHOTO / MUSTAFA OZER (Photo credit should read MUSTAFA OZER/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Robots play football during a test befor

    Robots play football during a test before the RoboCup 2011 in Istanbul, on July 7, 2011. RoboCup is the largest and most prestigious robotics event and a showcase for artificial intelligence and intelligent robotics research. AFP PHOTO / MUSTAFA OZER (Photo credit should read MUSTAFA OZER/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Robots play football during a test befor

    Robots play football during a test before the RoboCup 2011 in Istanbul, on July 7, 2011. RoboCup is the largest and most prestigious robotics event and a showcase for artificial intelligence and intelligent robotics research. AFP PHOTO / MUSTAFA OZER (Photo credit should read MUSTAFA OZER/AFP/Getty Images)

  • A goalkeeper robot in action during a te

    A goalkeeper robot in action during a test before the RoboCup 2011 in Istanbul, on July 7, 2011. RoboCup is the largest and most prestigious robotics event and a showcase for artificial intelligence and intelligent robotics research. AFP PHOTO / MUSTAFA OZER (Photo credit should read MUSTAFA OZER/AFP/Getty Images)

  • A woman watches a RoboCup (football play

    A woman watches a RoboCup (football playing robot) at the CeBIT IT fair on March 3, 2011 in Hanover, central Germany. More than 4,200 tech firms from 70 countries are expected to attend this year's CeBIT, with many of the big names that stayed away during the global financial crisis returning to Germany. The fair is running until March 5, 2011. AFP PHOTO / JOHANNES EISELE (Photo credit should read JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Participants prepare their team of robot

    Participants prepare their team of robots to play football at the RoboCup 2010 championship in Singapore on June 24, 2010. RoboCup 2010, the world's largest robotics event came to Southeast Asia for the first time with close to 4, 000 competitors from over 40 countries pit their brains and skills against each other during the competitions. The programme also includes a symposium and exhibitions where roboticists will present creations and share research. AFP PHOTO/ROSLAN RAHMAN (Photo credit should read ROSLAN RAHMAN/AFP/Getty Images)

  • A team of robots practice playing footba

    A team of robots practice playing football at the RoboCup 2010 championship in Singapore on June 24, 2010. RoboCup 2010, the world's largest robotics event came to Southeast Asia for the first time with close to 4, 000 competitors from over 40 countries pit their brains and skills against each other during the competitions. The programme also includes a symposium and exhibitions where roboticists will present creations and share research. AFP PHOTO/ROSLAN RAHMAN (Photo credit should read ROSLAN RAHMAN/AFP/Getty Images)

  • A group robotic German scientists from t

    A group robotic German scientists from the Technical University Darmstadt set up a rescue robot on June 30, 2009 on the eve of the 'RoboCup' the world largest robotic event, hosting 408 teams with 2300 scientists and students in Graz some 200 kilometers southwest from Vienna. Gerald Steinbauer, organizer of the disposition said that the aim of the engineers is to build, by the year 2050, robots that will be able to beat the human world football champion team. AFP PHOTO / DIETER NAGL (Photo credit should read DIETER NAGL/AFP/Getty Images)