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Over the years, Cabrinha rider, Evan Netsch has become a top competitor and a crowd favorite at Los Barriles’ Lord of the Wind. A well-rounded athlete, he competes in nearly all of the events and is a perennial competitor for the overall title: Lord of the Wind. This year, he made a few blunders that cost him the title and a fair amount of $cratch. We caught up with Evan after the 2016 Lord of the Wind to dissect his top four worst decisions.

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1. SCREW YOUR START – “In the countdown sequence for my first slalom race I thought the flag on the boat was the start flag. Looking at my watch, I was perfectly placed for the start. Not realizing it was jut a flag on the boat, I was waiting for it to drop and it never dropped. I saw everyone start and was like oh wait everyone’s a minute early… until I realized I was a minute late.”

2. PICK THE HARDEST HEAT – “During the first round of the big air contest the wind was only blowing 12 knots. Somehow I ended up being the only guy with an inflatable kite in a heat with 100% foil kites. The worst part is that the heats were self-seeded. I didn’t recognize any of the names on the heat board and just threw myself in there. Obviously I couldn’t jump as high as the foils, but the funny thing is that I had the 2nd highest score of all of the heats, so if I had seeded myself in any other heat I would have gone through to the final where the wind was really good. Instead, I got knocked out by the foilers when my ‘good jump’ wasn’t good enough!”

3. FAILURE TO CHUG – The contestants in the boardercross discipline had to chug a beer before the start. Grom handed everyone their beers for a start: 1. 2. 3. GO. “I went to pop the beer can open, and I’m serious, this is the first time in my life this has ever happened, but the tab slipped sideways and snapped off. I had opened the can just enough for foamy beer to spray everywhere but not enough for me to chug the beer. So I’m waving Grom down and he’s like dude whats wrong? By the time I got a new beer, everyone had already chugged theirs and started the course.” Even with his late start, Evan passed Drew Christiansen, who fell on a handlepass (which was required over one of the buoys) and caught up with the pack. Evan almost reeled in Anthar who was way up front and was in position to get second, but on the last leg he forgot about a small buoy in the surf, and although he passed within feet of it, he ended up getting disqualified for not following the course. It must have been one too many beers for him.

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At this point there was a pause in the interview, Even reflects, “I’m sure I did something else stupid.” Turns out he did.

4. KILL THE ESCAPE VEHICLE – After the awards ceremony and after party, he left his car’s lights on and awoke to a dead battery. It was a long walk on foot back into town the next morning to find a mechanic. To add insult to injury, the next morning his girlfriend texted him… “I’m looking through all the photos on the podium. I don’t see you. Were you even there?” She asked.

Here's the photo she couldn't find

Here’s the photo his girlfriend missed — Evan’s only podium shot is easy to miss between Drew Christiensen’s perfect head of hair, Texan Rocky Chatwell’s cowboy hat and Reed Brady’s sick shakas.

In the end, Evan walked away with a smile and $1000 cash for placing 3rd in freestyle. He also gets the Tkb Sportsman Award for tirelessly helping his friend and fellow competitor, Drew Christiansen, who wrapped himself around a contest buoy and struggled to break free.

Drew spent about half an hour in the water trying to untangle his kite. Evan was there to grab his board and help him out

Drew spent at least half an hour in the water trying to get his kite off the buoy. Evan was there as board caddy and tangle tamer.

Oh well. Better luck next year Evan!

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