Jacques Villeneuve to lead drivers' parade in Gilles' 1978 Ferrari

Jacques Villeneuve will drive his father's 1978 Ferrari Formula 1 car at the head of the Canadian Grand Prix drivers' parade to commemorate 40 years since Gilles' maiden victory.

Jacques Villeneuve to lead drivers' parade in Gilles' 1978 Ferrari
Gilles Villeneuve’s winning Ferrari T3
Gilles Villeneuve’s winning Ferrari T3
Jacques Villeneuve, Joann Villeneuve, Francois Dumontier
Gilles Villeneuve’s winning Ferrari T3
Gilles Villeneuve’s winning Ferrari T3
Gilles Villeneuve’s winning Ferrari T3

The Ferrari 312 T3, which the 1997 world champion has driven once before at the 2004 Goodwood Festival of Speed, will sit in front of the F1 grid before Sunday's race, where the ever-present 'Salut Gilles' wording at the start finish line has been altered to include '40 ans' for this weekend.

When the drivers' parade begins, Villeneuve will lead the field of Austin Healeys carrying the 2018 drivers around for a full lap of the circuit.

"It's great because it's the first time I will lead in a Formula 1 car in Montreal!" Villeneuve joked at the announcement, which took place on the start/finish line of the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve on Thursday.

"As time passes, [the memory of Gilles] has more meaning, because you see what it represents, to the fans, to the people, to the history of the sport. And now having kids myself, I feel that more as well.

"I've driven this car at Goodwood, so I've sat in it already. It's different, it's like sitting in a tuna tin can, basically.

"You can see your feet, then somebody puts a bit of plastic around you, which is the shell [bodywork], and you feel safe, but it's just plastic.

"But it's still amazing how advanced the cars were already back then."

Villeneuve was joined by his mother, Joann, and Canadian GP boss Francois Dumontier, who helped put the demonstration together for this weekend.

Joann Villeneuve said: "It's really an honour for me this weekend, after working so hard with the help of Francois to get the car that Gilles won with here in Montreal for this race.

"It's really special, it brings back a lot of emotions, something that's extremely extremely nice for me.

"If we had written [the 1978 win] as a script it would have been refused because it was so unbelievable.

"That has remained with me, just to see that first win, knowing the season had been so difficult for him, and the team had started to get nervous about Gilles.

"For him to win made all the difference in the world for his driving career. All of it mixed together, it was a magic moment."

Jacques' best result in the Canadian Grand Prix was second, which he took at the first attempt in 1996. Although he never led a lap at the Montreal circuit on merit, he did lead eight laps of that race after race leader Damon Hill made a pitstop, until he came in for his own stop.

shares
comments
Hamilton fears "difficult weekend" amid engine delay
Previous article

Hamilton fears "difficult weekend" amid engine delay

Next article

Hartley: "Silly" to comment on Norris offer "rumours"

Hartley: "Silly" to comment on Norris offer "rumours"
Load comments
The Schumacher trait that will give Haas hope in F1 2022 Prime

The Schumacher trait that will give Haas hope in F1 2022

Mick Schumacher’s knack of improving during his second season in a championship was a trademark of his junior formula career, so his progress during his rookie Formula 1 campaign with Haas was encouraging. His target now will be to turn that improvement into results as the team hopes to reap the rewards of sacrificing development in 2021

The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push Prime

The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push

As the driver of Formula 1’s medical car, Alan van der Merwe’s job is to wait – and hope his skills aren’t needed. James Newbold hears from F1’s lesser-known stalwart.

Formula 1
Jan 15, 2022
When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push Prime

When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push

There was an ace up the sleeve during the 1983 F1 title-winning season of Nelson Piquet and Brabham. It made a frontrunning car invincible for the last three races to see off Renault's Alain Prost and secure the combination's second world title in three years

Formula 1
Jan 13, 2022
How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner Prime

How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner

Brabham’s first world championship race-winning car was held back by unreliable Climax engines – or so its creators believed, as STUART CODLING explains

Formula 1
Jan 10, 2022
The steps Norris took to reach a new level in the 2021 F1 season Prime

The steps Norris took to reach a new level in the 2021 F1 season

Lando Norris came of age as a grand prix driver in 2021. McLaren’s young ace is no longer an apprentice or a quietly capable number two – he’s proved himself a potential winner in the top flight and, as Stuart Codling finds out, he’s ready to stake his claim to greatness…

Formula 1
Jan 9, 2022
How Fangio set the bar for Schumacher and Hamilton in F1 Prime

How Fangio set the bar for Schumacher and Hamilton in F1

Juan Manuel Fangio, peerless on track and charming off it, established the gold standard of grand prix greatness. Nigel Roebuck recalls a remarkable champion.

Formula 1
Jan 8, 2022
How Russell sees his place in the Mercedes-Hamilton F1 superteam Prime

How Russell sees his place in the Mercedes-Hamilton F1 superteam

George Russell joining Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes this year gives it arguably the best line-up in Formula 1 – if it can avoid too many fireworks. After serving his apprenticeship at Williams, Russell is the man that Mercedes team believes can lead it in the post-Hamilton era, but how will he fare against the seven-time champion? Motorsport.com heard from the man himself

Formula 1
Jan 6, 2022
How F1 pulled off its second pandemic season and its 2022 implications Prime

How F1 pulled off its second pandemic season and its 2022 implications

OPINION: The Formula 1 season just gone was the second to be completed under the dreaded shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic, but in many ways it was much more ‘normal’ than 2020. Here’s the story of how the championship’s various organisers delivered a second challenging campaign, which offers a glimpse at what may be different next time around

Formula 1
Jan 5, 2022