The restart after a safety car is always a difficult situation for Formula 1 drivers. If they’re leading, they want to get a good jump on the chasing pack and out-fox their rivals.
But, if they’re in the field, they’ve got to react to the leader and try to not lose time to those ahead. It’s a very tricky position to be in and it can often catch people out.
That’s what happened at the Belgian Grand Prix last weekend, with a very close call not being shown in the TV broadcast and only being revealed afterwards.
Force India’s second clash between Esteban Ocon and Sergio Perez brought out the safety car, with Ocon losing a few spots and Perez dropping to the back of the pack.
Ocon was clearly eager to get going and when the gap to those ahead increased on the restart, the Frenchman thought it was time to go. But, it wasn’t.
— Esteban Ocon (@OconEsteban) August 30, 2017
He had to slam on the brakes and veer to the right to avoid smashing into the back of Kevin Magnussen’s car, and Ocon shared the video alongside an amusing caption on Twitter.
Ocon said Magnussen tested his reactions, but you could also argue the Force India racer wasn’t quite paying attention. Either way, we’re glad Ocon managed to avoid contact.
I'll bring a new pair of undies for you mate 😉😅 https://t.co/bnqJDR5gXj
— Kevin Magnussen (@KevinMagnussen) August 30, 2017
Magnussen had a hilarious response to Ocon’s tweet, too. Not quite his reaction to Nico Hulkenberg in Hungary, but still pretty funny.
Ocon will probably be a bit more careful on future safety car restarts after that near miss…