Mitchell Harrison | Extends Contract With BUD Racing
Mitchell Harrison’s move from the United States to Europe in the middle of the 2019 season was unorthodox, but it’s clear that the young American and the BUD Racing team have hit it off in their time together. How so? On Friday, the team and rider announced a contract extension that will keep Harrison on the squad and in the MX2 division for the 2020 Monster Energy FIM Motocross World Championship.
Harrison started 2019 with the Rockwell Racing team and contested the 250 West Coast region of the Monster Energy Supercross Series with mixed results; Harrison experienced repeat mechanical issues before Main Events and was unable to show his true pace. Since the team was Supercross-only, Harrison had to find a plan for the remainder of the 2019 season.
BUD Racing experienced issues early in the year when injuries sidelined Brian Moreau and the team was in need of a fill-in rider. They initially had Lorenzo Locurio in line for their MX2 spot, but Locurcio was unable to make the trip to Europe after issues with his visa and the Venezuelan government was unable to sort out the problem due to political unrest in the South American country. Once Locurcio was ruled out, Harrison was quickly selected and flew to Europe for the 2019 MXGP of Trentino, the fourth round of the 2019 championship. He showed speed in the debut with a fifth-place finish in Saturday’s qualifying moto, but had issues in the Sunday’s points-paying races. Since then Harrison has made progress in the class and with the team, evident in his uptick of results midway through the season and his current rank of 17th in the championship standings.
Away from the track, Harrison has made the most of the international experience. Since the BUD Racing team is French, he’s set up a home base in the south of France and traveled throughout Europe and Asia with his girlfriend.
That Harrison inked a contract extension for 2020 is huge in every way. Out of sight means out of mind and he has not been on the radar of any American teams for 2020 (his current teammate Moreau, however, is slated to move to the Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/KTM team in a deal headed up by KTM executives). While US teams filled up, the MX2 class in Europe is set to see an exodus of riders due to the 23-year-old age rule. Since Harrison is 21 years old (he’ll turn 22 in January 2020) he’s eligible to compete for at least one more season.