The #426 white Husqvarna FC250 was an unexpected sight at Grands Prix in Latvia and Germany over the past two weeks. EMX250 European Championship opening round winner, Conrad Mewse, had been drafted into the MX2 class for his debut on the Rockstar Energy Husky and into the ‘deep end’.

For fans, especially those in the UK, it was an odd switch given the way that the former 85cc World and European champion dominated proceedings at Valkenswaard on Easter weekend and immediately announced his candidature for the 2016 European crown.

“Valkenswaard was a great weekend and I was focused on EMX and looking to get the title but Thomas [Covington] got injured and only Max [Anstie] was in MX2,” the teenager explains. “The team and I sat down and talked about the best option and it turned out to be MX2 and to use the rest of this year to learn. Then to come out next year and really go for top 10 in the championship.”

Advertisement

Mewse, who’s the Dirt Bike Rider magazine June issue cover star, revealed it was a hard wrench to go from a position as race winner and championship leader to top 20 obscurity in MX2 but a long-term strategy ruled his thinking. “For sure it was not an easy decision,” he admits. “To give away the [EMX250] red plate was gutting. I think MX2 is where it’s ‘at’ and you can learn so much in this class. I need to keep on progressing.”

Reflecting on his second GP outing at Teutschenthal where he went 21-23 (of 37) the Brit said: “I’m not very happy at the moment because I am missing the start. If you look at my lap-times then I am not far off the top 10 but all these boys are so fast and so close and the start really counts. If I can get that sorted then hopefully I can get pulled along a bit.”

Mewse’s switch echoes that of brand-mate Ben Watson who sacrificed European Championship glory for a Grand Prix baptism in 2015. Watson was the youngest rider in MX2 at that point. Unfortunately he cannot capitalise on the experience gained due to a foot injury that could keep him out for a large part of the 2016 campaign.

MORE READING...