Early in the offseason, it seemed like Brian Hsu was going to be the next import to the United States. The young European (technically he’s German and Taiwanese) had a long-term contract with Suzuki and with their support was set to find a home at one of the brand’s supported squads for Supercross and the Nationals. Hsu and his parents temporarily moved to Southern California and waited for assignment to a team, but uncertainties with Suzuki’s 250 program left them looking for other options. With that, the family went back to Europe and inked a new deal with the Husqvarna Maurer Racing Team of Germany for 2017. During our recent trip to France for the 2016 Paris-Lille SX, which saw Hsu take a main event win in the SX2 class, we spent a few moments with the talented teenager and discussed the sudden change in plans.
We know that a few months ago you came to California and were looking for a ride in the United States. What did you think of your time there?
I had a contract with Suzuki and 2017 was the earliest I could go to the United States to try out. We went but many minor things didn't work out. The 250 team when we were there was not finalized, so they were working on the team and putting everything together. I was prepared, but it was at the wrong time. I didn't have the time to ride and didn't get a real bike, so we just decided to come back to Europe while they did their thing. Maybe next time. But with this new team and Husqvarna, we've known them for years. It's a German team based in Hungary, and that's like my hometown because my father is Hungarian. We did a contract with Husqvarna Maurer Racing Team and everything worked out well. I have a possibility to go to the USA still, but now I will focus on this team. I have what I need with my suspension and bike set up, so everything is great. I'm very happy about the bike because my suspension is the most important thing.
Were you ever nervous that a contract wasn't going to come from a team in the United States and that the teams in Europe would fill up?
No, I wasn't even thinking about that. Things will come and there is not much choice, so you have to let it go.
What is the plan for 2017? It sounds like you'll race in Germany and the MX2 class in the MXGP series.
For next year I will ride in MX2, but just in Europe. The overseas races are crazy, so we will just race the MX2 in Europe. I'll race the ADAC MX Masters in the 450 class (aboard a 250cc bike) and some Supercross races.
2016 was a very difficult year because you spent most of it recovering from an injury. Is everything healed now?
The crash happened in November 2015 and I had six months off just to heal my wrist. That was crazy because I couldn't do anything for six months. With my previous Suzuki team, things were not working out with things like the suspension setup and they didn't really take care of it. I was struggling all of that stuff, like air forks are not my type and I couldn't do what I wanted on the bike. I knew that the Husqvarna Maurer bikes are good and that I could bring the Solva suspension because that's what I need. At Paris-Lille I was so comfortable and I could throw the bike where I wanted, which is what I need.
What will you do for the next few months?
During the Paris-Lille weekend there was a race in Stuttgart, Germany, but I chose to race Paris-Lille because it is bigger. I'll do the rest of the ADAC SX races (editor's note: Hsu had issues with officials over rules throughout the Munich round and likely will instead contest the French SX tour). Paris-Lille was my first Supercross race of the season and it was a good experience. I just need to get the experience and have fun.
I rode this bike for just four weeks and two of those weeks were Supercross, so it hasn't been much. I got the bike and immediately felt good, so we tested suspension and engines.