The next time Tyler Shaw sits behind the wheel of his No. 85 A-Modified vehicle to get his fix on some high voltage of driving excitement at Moberly's Randolph County Raceway, the Mexico native will have entered another decade of his life .
Shaw celebrated his 30th birthday July 3 with his wife, Courtney, and their son, Lucas.
"Racing gives me an adrenaline rush. It's exciting to be among two or three cars that are going full tilt. It makes me want to really concentrate better and motivates me to drive harder," Shaw said.
After jetting off on the right foot to finish second in the 2020 season opening race for the A-Modifieds class June 7, Shaw absorbed some tough luck in his latest race held at RCR on June 28. Shaw began the A-Mods feature in the sixth position among 14 drivers, but vehicle breakdown issues forced him into the pit early and he did not finish the race for the first time in four starts at RCR.
Shaw is looking to bounce back toward brighter things this Sunday as he intends to compete again at RCR and move up the ladder in the season's point standings.
Shaw currently rests in fourth place, just 18 points behind leader Brandyn Ryan from Carthage, Illinois, among 26 A-Modified drivers who have competed at the Moberly 3/8-mile track facility. He happens to be one digit from third place owned by Scott Bryant of Baring, while Chase Breid of Madison is in second place and 10 points behind the leader Ryan.
Shaw, who averages at least 20 races each of the past three years, said his transition from B-Mods to A-Modifieds about six years ago was a good one.
"I started off racing in the Hornets class (4-Cylinder) and ran that for maybe two years before jumping up to B-Mods. I raced in that for a couple of nights and was tearing too much stuff up so I decided it would be easier to compete in the A-Modifieds," Shaw said. "The pay was better, and I don't tear up anywhere near the amount of stuff on my car that needs fixing. It's easy for me to spend at least five hours a lot of nights working on my car during the week. Keeping the car in one piece is my biggest challenge. I've totaled my car twice and that puts a damper on racing."
One of Shaw's most memorable races happened to be the first time he saw the checkered flag wave in his honor when he won his first race while competing at RCR (formerly known as 24 Raceway in Moberly) during the 2014 season.
"I remember I passed everybody on the high side at the cushion. I had a lot of drivers after the race come to visit me wondering how I got my car to stick up there so well," Shaw said. "I don't really know myself. I had to try it. An old friend of mine, Dave Miller, told me if I ever was up against the wall to never let out of it. I put my car on the high side and it worked for me that night."
Shaw's pit crew consists of his father, Kevin, as well as Brandon Rutherford, Kevin Newbrough and David Jason on most occasions.
Other short track destinations include Tri City, Illinois, as well as Warrensburg, Lake of the Ozarks and Memphis in the Show-Me State.
When he is not behind the wheel or tinkering with modifications and vehicle repairs, Shaw can be found at his full-time job working at his father's business Ken's Fast Lube in Mexico.
Shaw said his favorite dirt track was Callaway Raceway in Fulton before it recently closed, and his favorite professional race driver is Jeff Gordon.