News 22 Feb 2023

Serco switch 'the next step' for Budd in MX2 title chase

Queensland-based rider enjoying a strong build-up to Wonthaggi opener.

Image: Supplied.

The last two seasons have seen an upwards trend for Penrite ProMX MX2 contender Rhys Budd, with the current national number two confident that his switch to Serco Yamaha is the ‘next step’ towards achieving an elusive title in the category.

Budd impressed on the national MX2 scene in 2021 with Yamalube Yamaha Racing, finishing third in the covid-shortened championship. Yamalube-surrounded again for 2022, the Queensland-based rider went one better and landed P2 in the title-race.

For 2023, Budd joins Jesse Dobson at the coveted, championship-proven Serco Yamaha squad to effectively take the place of Bailey Malkiewicz, who returned to WBR Yamaha in light of a step to MX1. Going bronze, then silver in the past MX2 two seasons, naturally the step and target for Budd is the number one plate and he is confident Serco Yamaha will provide the tools to take him to the next level.

“I definitely think so, it’s one of the reasons I made the switch over,” Budd told MotoOnline. “I think it is was definitely the next step for my career to better myself. I’ve been slowly getting better each year, so I think it was the change that I needed to take me to the next level and get me to that title.

“I think that support I have got from those guys so far and the amount of help that put me through and got me to where I am right now, it’s really good and I think it’s going to help me be able to chase an MX2 title this year. Just super-stoked to be a part of the Serco crew.”

By all accounts, the build-up to the ProMX opener on 5 March has been a strong one for Budd, banking testing miles on the factory-backed YZ250F and also completing his first hit out with the squad at the recent Mountain Man Motocross event in Toowoomba.

“So far the pre-season has been awesome, just been having a lot of fun on the bike and we have done a lot of testing to get the bike feeling as good as it is right now,” he added. “It’s been awesome. I’ve been putting in a lot of work with the whole Ford Dale crew and we have been putting in some really good laps and having really good days at that the practice track.

“I’m in a good spot physically and mentally right now, the Mountain Man event at Toowoomba was a good day for me, it was my first hit out for me with the team and my first time working together with my mechanic at a race meet so we had an awesome time.

“I finished up fourth overall in the open combined class and I was the first 250. Overall, it was an awesome day and, like I said, the pre-season is just going really well. I’m excited to get the race season underway – I feel like I’m fit and prepared to do battle, so I am looking forward to it in a few weeks’ time.”