Max Verstappen explained how he needed to “focus” with the threat
of Lando Norris bearing down on him throughout the Sao Paulo Grand
Prix. The Dutchman won the race with a margin of only 8.2 seconds,
one of his closest yet in a year with 17 victories, and counting.
Tyre degradation was one of the biggest factors throughout the
weekend, with Verstappen admitting that it was a key factor for Red
Bull throughout the two-stop race. “Maybe it looks fully easy from
the outside, but I think for most of every stint, Lando was
matching my lap-times,” Verstappen told media, including
RacingNews365 . “It was always like the last five to ten laps when
it seemed like then we had better tyre deg.” Verstappen: It’s not
like you can relax Norris had one attempt at overtaking Verstappen
seven laps into the restart, following a brief red flag period for
a first corner incident. Verstappen managed to defend from the
McLaren driver, who later conceded that attempting another overtake
would put him at risk to Fernando Alonso. This did not ease the
pressure on Verstappen however, who believes any mistake would have
put him in the clutches of Norris for the lead. “The beginning of
every stint, I definitely had to focus a lot and I couldn’t afford
to make mistakes,” he added. “Around here with the high [tyre] deg
as well, it’s not the easiest to drive. “It’s not like you can just
relax and let the car just roll into the corners without any
consequence. “You had to be really on it Luckily everything we did,
also strategy-wise, pit stops, were good.”

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