The Butterfly Effect
You're familiar with the Butterfly Effect, "When a butterfly flaps its wings in Brazil, we get a hurricane in Florida."
In other words, even the smallest action can affect a result many times greater.
That, in its' simplest terms, is what has happened to Michael Waltrip Racing. It was just a few months ago that we were asking whether or not MWR had become one of the elite teams in NASCAR. Now, we're looking at an organization scrambling to survive.
And, it's largely because of one ill-advised action. In fact, if they had been stealthier about it, we wouldn't even be having this conversation.
Instead, Ty Norris' "pit now" command to a surprised Brian Vickers has resulted in a series of events that have nearly brought down the organization; and have damaged it physically and reputationally.
Follow the ripple effect: Martin Truex, Jr. gets booted from the Chase, his sponsor leaves, now he and his crew chief are gone as are one-third of the MWR employees.
And, that's not all. Clint Bowyer, who's in the Chase, has been a non-factor and his popularity has taken a huge hit as he carries around the stigma of being labeled a cheater.
Amazing isn't it? One small action caused all of that. And while the sport has moved on; it could be years (if ever) before MWR recovers.