Big Machine Label Group president/CEO and racing aficionado Scott Borchetta is now starting his own NASCAR Xfinity Series team.
On Tuesday, Borchetta announced the formation of Big Machine Racing Team, which plans to compete full-time this season in the Xfinity Series.
The team’s No. 48 Chevrolet will be driven primarily by Jade Buford, who made his first four career Xfinity starts last season, all on road courses. His best finish was eighth in rainy conditions at the Charlotte Motor Speedway roval.
Longtime NASCAR crew chief Patrick Donahue will oversee the Mooresville, N.C.-based operation. He served as a crew chief for fellow Xfinity team SS Green Light Racing over the past two seasons.
Donahue confirmed Wednesday on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio that Buford is not yet approved to compete on the oval at Daytona International Speedway, which hosts the Xfinity season opener on Feb. 13. Buford is approved for the second race of the season on Feb. 20 at the Daytona road course, as well as the rest of the 2021 Xfinity schedule.
“I’ve always been involved in racing, it’s a part of my DNA,” Borchetta said in a release. “Whether as a competitor, a fan or a sponsor, racing is a constant in my life and is a part of our Big Machine culture.
“The formation of the Big Machine Racing team only broadens the integration opportunities for our recording artists and the sport.”
Buford has an established road racing background with stints in various sports car series like GRAND-AM, IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge, British GT Championship, and the series now known as GT World Challenge America.
Over those years, he collected wins at historic circuits like Watkins Glen International and Sebring International Raceway.
“I’ve dreamed of being in the NASCAR series and I intend to make the absolute most of this opportunity,” Buford said in the same release. “I know it’s a steep learning curve, and we face great challenges, but I have the utmost confidence in what we’re building and I just can’t wait to get to Daytona.”
Through his Big Machine brand, Borchetta has paired his twin passions of music and motorsports on numerous occasions over the years with pre-race ceremonies and sponsorships of races and race cars.
The 58-year-old has long been a racer himself. After competing in motocross and quarter-midgets as a child, Borchetta came back to the sport during the 1990s at Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway.
There, he won a Legends division championship in 1998 and three consecutive NASCAR SuperTrucks division championships from 2003-2005. He was inducted into the track’s Hall of Fame last year.
Additionally, Borchetta drove a 1972 Chevrolet Corvette to a national championship win last year in the Sportscar Vintage Racing Association’s Group 6 division.