Tyler Walker (racing driver) : biography
Timothy Tyler Andrew Walker (born July 15, 1979), is an American race car competitor. Walker is one of many racers who has competed competitively in many interdisciplinary automotive ranks. His automotive exploits include cycling competition, open-wheeled sprint cars, where has obtained a large majority of his success and notoriety, as well as being a stock car pilot, formerly competing in the prestigious NASCAR ranks. The first fourth-generation driver to compete in NASCAR since the late deceased Adam Petty, Walker is but one member of a racing legacy.
Early life and career
Walker began his racing career in two-wheeled vehicles. He started competing bicycles at the age of six and upgraded to motorcycles (similar two-wheel prototypes to bicycles but only with motors) at the tender age of eight years. He then upgraded to go-karts, and won four California state karting championships and had a total of 200 wins, coincidentally the same number of victories Richard Petty has in NASCAR. When he turned sixteen years old, an age where many of his peers were first learning to drive, Walker began his Sprint Car racing career. His first competitive foray was in the All Star Circuit of Champions series. He was victorious seven races throughout the season. In 1996, young Walker made his stock car debut in the ASA AC-Delco Challenge Series at Indianapolis Raceway Park. He timed in 33rd in the field during time trials, and finished twenty-seventh after his engine expired ninety-five laps into the racing session."Starvin Marvin/Speedway 200." Ultimate Racing History. Ultimate Racing History, 15 Jun 1996. Web. 2 Feb 2013. . Before long, he was invited to partake in the prestigious World of Outlaws competition and won several main feature events over the next two seasons. He also won Rookie of the Year honors in 1996 at the famous Knoxville Nationals. He would join the All-Star Circuit of Champions in 1997, winning seven races and claiming Rookie of the Year honors in his first full season of sprint car competition. The next calender year, he swept all the main feature events in the World of Outlaws' Western World Championships at the famed Manzanita Speedway. He would follow up with a win at Tri-Main Speedway in 1999, the last year of the millennium.http://web.archive.org/web/20070511004703/http://www.billdavisracing.com/ts36/index.html
During this time, Walker would later be invited to make his first full-time attempt at full-fender stock car racing. Tyler had signed with Tyler Jet Motorsports, owned by Tyler, Texas native Tim Beverly, to compete in the NASCAR Busch Series in the year of 2000. To prepare for this, he made a start in the grueling ARCA Bondo/MarHyde Series driving for Beverly. His #15 1999 Pontiac Grand Prix qualified and finished twenty-eighth, three laps off of the pace at the EasyCare Vehicle Service Contracts 150 at Lowe's Motor Speedway.http://www.ultimateracinghistory.com/race.php?raceid=6880 Unfortunately for Walker, the necessary sponsorship needed to finance a competitive entry did not materialize for the 2000 season, so Tyler's deal with Tyler Jet out of Tyler, Texas became null and void. He made one attempt at the BellSouth Mobility 320, driving the #28 Larry Lockamy entry, but his qualifying speed was too slow to make the competitive 43-car field.http://www.ultimateracinghistory.com/race.php?raceid=8627
Return to stock cars and sprints (2005-2010)
In 2005, Walker signed a contract to drive the #38 Great Clips entry for Akins, again splitting time with longtime friend and former boss Kasey Kahne. Teamed with crew chief Jon Wolfe, Walker would compete in a total of fifteen races for the operation along with competing part-time for Rookie of the Year honors in the NASCAR Busch Series. He made an additional start for the Jay Robinson Racing team, driving the #28 Deka Batteries Ford Taurus at Dover International Speedway (formerly known as "Dover Downs International Speedway") and finishing 43rd, last in the field after crashing on lap #27 on the front straightaway. With Akins Motorsports, Walker's best finish came at the Carquest Auto Parts 300 at Lowe's Motor Speedway. He qualified tenth and finished fourteenth. He also had identical runs at Kentucky Speedway and New Hampshire International Speedway, where he started ninth and finished nineteenth and completed a minimum of 199 laps in both races.http://www.racing-reference.info/drivdet/walkety01/2005/B Ultimately, Walker's tenure at the Akins team would be cut short after the Zippo 200 at the famed Watkins Glen International road course in the Finger Lakes region of New York State (not the city). During the race, he became entangled with NASCAR Busch East Series champion Matt Kobyluck and crashed in Turn 4.http://www.racing-reference.info/race/2005_Zippo_200/B After this incident, Walker was laid off and relieved of his driving duties with the team. Because Kahne could still not run every race, Walker's replacements would be Mike Wallace and later A. J. Foyt IV,http://www.racing-reference.info/rquery?id=38&trk=t0&series=B&cn=1&yr=2005 grandson of A. J. Foyt a former four-time Indianapolis 500 winner, who would briefly take on the #38 team full-time in 2006 before being released. Walker spent the reaminder of 2005 competing part-time in the USAC Silver Crown Series, driving Kahne's #19 entry. His favorite race was the Ted Horn 100 at DuQuoin State Fairgrounds, where he won the pole (starting first) and finished in the third position.http://www.ultimateracinghistory.com/race.php?raceid=24576
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