For the first time in the last few years we saw a different approach to the usual rush at the re-start post Safety Car period; the most common technique relies in slowing down before approaching the last couple of corners and then accelerating suddenly onto the main straight in order to make the biggest gap possible between leader and the runner ups: the more unexpected acceleration is made, the bigger space is created behind the first car.
Max Verstappen, even thanks to the Interlagos circuit conformation, adopted a different tactic in order to build a secure gap to Hamilton following him: he slowed down all the pack until the very last metres possible in order to avoid the mistake committed from the Briton; Hamilton early acceleration permitted the Dutch to fully benefit his slipstream and to easily pass him at the first turn. On the other hand, the compact pack created by Verstappen allowed him to give less room to the other contenders to stick their noses behind his Red Bull’s tail.
The extravaganza played out from Max didn’t passed underway from Ross Brawn, one of the men behind the rule revolution of the new Liberty Media course. "He was particularly strong at the second re-start, when he slowed the field right down with the aim of ensuring no one would be able to slipstream past him and snatch victory” told the former strategist at Benetton, Ferrari and BrawnGP to Autosport. "It was an exciting and fascinating restart” added “which will be analysed very carefully, as the closeness of the pack in the seconds leading up the green flags resulted in a thrilling spectacle as drivers jockeyed for position and where the slightest advantage proved decisive. Examining the possibility of procedurally recreating those conditions in future is an interesting concept and one that will undoubtedly be explored in the coming period".
Even Daniel Ricciardo showed up his appreciation to the part of race he was able to see from the TV: "It was cool” said the Aussie driver of Renault to the English magazine “I think because now they do no overtaking until the control line, or the start-finish line, it allows us to basically not leave so early, and push it to the very end. […] When the race is a little bit follow the leader at times, a restart ignites a bit more adrenaline in you"