NASCAR, Kurt Busch and Shrunken Heads

It's OK...I'm all better now.
It’s OK…I’m all better now.

If ever a racing driver in history deserved inclusion in the rare but fabled “Lazarus Syndrome” files, it would be Kurt Busch. He’s had more dead careers resurrected than Fatty Arbuckle.

I will be the first to admit that I was wrong as to how the sponsors and NASCAR would treat him after his very public wrangling’s with Patricia Driscoll. You won’t hear me admit that I’m wrong very often. But when I am, I am.

Busch not only was brought back into the NASCAR fold, under considerable public pressure I might add, but he has put himself right back into the limelight as a contender week in and week out. He will win a race, or more likely several, as the 2015 Sprint Cup season rolls along.

He may not have been a favorite for Tony Stewart or his teammates, but Gene Haas didn’t need their permission to place him in the team. How many zeros are behind a number are in direct proportion as to how well an idea or endeavor is received. Right Gene Haas looks like a genius.

Busch has managed to overcome a great deal of adversity, most of it self inflicted, to place himself in the position of being very self-controlled and still aggressive on the track. I’m sure there is shrunken head tacked to a wall with a medical moniker attached to it in a Psychiatrist office somewhere.

The question that will remain for quite some time is can he keep it up? It surely hasn’t escaped anyone who is kind enough to read this opinion is that when he’s interviewed or challenged in any way his responses are very deliberate and almost mechanical. That’s not a bad thing; perhaps it represents the first steps in the ‘Road to Recovery’.

Samantha Busch could probably modify any man's behavior.
Samantha Busch could probably modify any man’s behavior.

I would venture to say, and this is just an opinion, that he is under psychiatric or psychological care on a regular basis that includes behavior modification. Let’s face it, after a certain point in our lives, people do not have fundamental personality changes but behavior modification is a legitimate course of action to those who have detrimental behaviors. Busch would qualify on that one.

Speaking today with a close associate, Bill Marlowe, the subject of Kyle Busch came up as it relates to his brother. It’s obvious that Kyle’s behavior and general mental attitude has taken a major step toward the good. Perhaps, as Bill pointed out, there is a reason.

It is probably no accident that Kyle’s behavior is in no small part due to the fact that his wife has a Masters Degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology. What is that? Here’s the short answer: “Industrial organizational psychology is the branch of psychology that applies psychological theories and principles to organizations. Often referred to as I-O psychology, this field focuses on increasing workplace productivity and related issues such as the physical and mental well being of employees.”

I would think that if the Busch’s have any familial regard for one another then Kyle’s wife may have played a substantial role in convincing NASCAR to let psychological intervention play into brother-in-law Kurt’s remediation back into the field.

Whatever the case it certainly seems to be working on all fronts. Kurt is giving Kevin Harvick a run for his money, SHR seems to have a shot of at least two cars making the Chase and I have actually admitted I was wrong about Kurt having a career left in motorsports.

I suppose all is right with the world.

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