Mechanical wave pools, inflatable race boards and howling sand storms made the Abu Dhabi All Stars Invitational one of the most interesting events in the history of competitive standup. A talented roster of invite-only athletes traveled to the United Arab Emirates last week to compete both surfing and racing in the alien desert environment.

The surf contest was held in the Wadi Adventure Park, where the wave pool gave the athletes a completely even playing field: three identical waves going right in Round 1, three identical waves going left in Round 2 and a closeout for Round 3. In the later rounds, riders got to choose three waves of their choice. Maui boy Zane Schweitzer took the win, nailing a perfect 10 en route to victory for a ride punctuated with an air. France’s Caroline Angibaud finished first in the women’s surf event.

Day 3 of the overall competition dawned with 40-knot winds hurling desert sand through the city. The wind eventually laid down and the athletes battled it out in a series of sprints on inflatable boards. The inflatable boards were used in an effort to level the playing field, much like the wave at the Wadi Adventure Park did for the surf competition. Everyone went hard but it was podium stalwart and current World Series leader Connor Baxter who took the win. Australian Jamie Mitchell finished in second after winning all his heats up until the final.

Schweitzer took third in the sprints, and with it, the overall win at the Abu Dhabi All Stars Invitational. France’s Olivia Piana, who won the sprints for the women and took second place in the surfing event, was the overall champion for the women.

Abu Dhabi All Stars Sprints
1) Connor Baxter
2) Jamie Mitchell
3) Zane Schweitzer

1) Olivia Piana
2) Manca Notar
3) Caroline Angibaud

Abu Dhabi All Stars Surf
1) Zane Schweitzer
2) Ian Vaz
3) Kody Kerbox

1) Caroline Angibaud
2) Olivia Piana
3) Jen Scully

For more info, check out Standup World Tour.