News 10 Nov 2023

Future of Budd secured despite Serco team closure

SX2 contender looking for 'redemption' in Newcastle supercross.

Image: Foremost Media.

Serco Yamaha team rider Rhys Budd’s future is secure despite the closure of his current team at the conclusion of the 2023 Australian Supercross Championship (AUSX) season.

The decision of Serco Motorsports to close its racing program was widely known prior to the opening round of AUSX in Adelaide, but was formally announced last night.

Budd joined the team for the 2023 season following a successful two-year stint with Yamalube Yamaha Racing. He intended to continue with Serco, however, once it became clear it was closing, he was forced to look for other avenues for 2024 and beyond, revealing that he has signed a deal that will see him contest both the MX2 and SX2 championships next year.

“I pretty much thought that I was going racing with them [Serco Yamaha] next year, but it turns out that’s not what’s going on,” Budd told MotoOnline. “It really did open my doors to seek somewhere else and I have been very fortunate to land a spot somewhere – I can’t mention where that is yet.

“But yeah, I’m pretty lucky where I am and I think a lot of people believe in my abilities and stuff like that, so I was able to land a spot somewhere, and we will be able to find that out soon. Right now the focus is on going racing, no matter what the situation is, and I just want to finish strong with the Serco Yamaha guys.”

The outright pace of Budd was not in question in Adelaide, with the number 22 topping the charts in qualifying on the short, sharp layout. However, once the gates dropped, things didn’t go in his favour, and he finished 11th on the night in SX2, unable to transfer to the main.

McDonald Jones Stadium holds fond memories for Budd, who was able to win one of the finals inside the venue last year and stand on the SX2 overall podium for the round. As a result, he will be looking to fight right at the pointy-end when the gates drop tomorrow night in Newcastle.

“A little bit of redemption is definitely what I am after,” Budd added. “I showed what I am capable of at Adelaide, I showed speed, but unfortunately I just wasn’t able to execute come the racing. That was very sad on my end and I felt embarrassed after that night, to be completely honest.

“I’ve just been doing what I do best during the week, been clocking off my laps and just doing nice clean laps all the way through the week. I have been feeling good, and this is where I got my first race win and first supercross podium last year in Newcastle, so very excited to be back in this stadium, very good memories.

“I’m sitting here right now just having a bit of a look at the track and what they have put together, and am really excited to go racing tomorrow night. I think it is going to be a good one, and as I said, I just want to finish nice and strong with Serco Yamaha for these last two races to go.”

While it is understood that Yamalube Yamaha Racing will form Yamaha’s primary 250 class effort from next year, Budd has also been linked to both Empire Kawasaki and Raceline Husqvarna teams at varying stages of the current silly season.