Both Naish’s Jesse Richman and Kevin Langeree have been sidelined due to injury leading into the 2017 Red Bull King of the Air.

Richman, who suffered a concussion and broken bone in his face from a tow surfing accident is opting to sit out the event. Although the accident occurred in late December, Richman has chosen to focus on letting his brain fully heal from his brutal accident instead of risking furthering his injury. While the 2013 champ is disappointed to not have the opportunity to extend his KOTA podium streak, he is motivated to focus his energy into other projects including the Jesse Richman Premier Club.

Langeree, who has been on the podium three years in a row starting with an event win in 2014, broke his ankle on an awkward landing while training in Cape Town for KOTA. Said Langeree in a statement on his Facebook page:

“You have to train smart, which I did, but even then there is a big chance of hurting yourself. Unfortunately that’s part of the game. I’m not really sure how long it will take. I still have to see a couple specialists. But I’m going to do everything in my ability to get back on the water ASAP.”

While it is disappointing to see both Richman and Langeree both suffer injuries prior to one of the biggest events of the year, it does allow them to focus their energy into other projects and events coming up. Richman, who has been growing the aforementioned Jesse Richman Premier Club, also has plans to attend Kitefest Argentina 2017 in Cuesta Del Rio at the end of February. Langeree has been steadily developing his KEVVLOG video blog and will be sharing insight on his life as he recovers from injury to get back on the water. Said Langeree via e-mail to Naish “I won’t be kiting a lot the coming weeks. But make sure to stay tuned because I’m going to be talking a bit more on the technical side. Like what kites work best for jumping big, how do you jump big, my rehab progress and making beautiful content with my drone, so lots of cool stuff still coming.”

Watch Kevin’s broken ankle Vlog below:

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