Gilles Villeneuve – A gifted F1 hero gone too early

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Remembering F1 driver Gill Villeneuve on his loss of life anniversary.

Function 08 Might 2018, 18:05 IST





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Grand Prix
Gilles Villeneuve in his Ferrari

Gilles Villeneuve arguably Method one’s best cult icon, usually considered essentially the most gifted driver and not using a world title. The F1 Circuit which hosts the Canadian Grand Prix, Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal, is known as in his honor.

On the eighth of Might 1982 on the Belgian Grand Prix at Circuit Zolder, he misplaced his battling for the pole place. The Ferrari of Gilles Villeneuve and the March of Jochen Mass collided. The 2 drivers had been on a settle down lap and had been heading again to the pits, although, in his signature model, Villeneuve was driving his automotive to its limits. Mass noticed Villeneuve approaching at a speedy velocity from behind on the left-handed bend earlier than the Terlamenbocht nook, and pulled off the road to permit the Canadian to cross, however Gilles made the identical maneuver, leaving the racing line to attempt to get round Mass. 

The ensuing crash despatched Villeneuve’s Ferrari airborne, and when it landed, the automotive tore aside, throwing Villeneuve into the catch fencing. Different drivers stopped and tried to free Villeneuve from the fence, although he was already blue within the face and never respiration. 

He died the identical evening, the reason for loss of life was a neck fracture.

Crew Orders denied him a World Championship?

Villeneuve may have received the world championship in 1979 season if he had chosen to disregard crew orders at Monza and handed his teammate Jody Scheckter for the win, however Gilles was a person of rules and did what he had promised, he completed in second place simply half a second behind his team-mate when the chequered flag was waved.

Jody Scheckter
Jody Scheckter celebrating his World Champion with Gilles Villeneuve at Monza, 1979

He completed second within the championship that 12 months to Scheckter, lacking the title by simply 4 factors. He made his level clear within the last race of the 12 months at Watkins Glen the place he was quickest by 9 seconds away from anybody else in a moist follow session and went on to take his fourth profession win in the principle race.

Gill Villeneuve was born in Quebec on 18 January 1950. He was competing in snowmobile racing and Method Atlantic earlier than he made his mark in F1. He spent most of his brief profitable profession with Ferrari and received six Grand Prix.

He’s most well-known for the battle with Rene Arnoux on the 1979 French Grand Prix.

Video: One in every of greatest finishes in F1 historical past – Villeneuve /Arnoux 1979 French Grand Prix:

He’s nonetheless adored by Ferrari’s Tifosi, and his son Jacques Villeneuve carried his father’s legacy and abilities and went on to win the 1997 F1 World Championship.

Veteran World Champion Sir Jackie Stewart referred to as him “phenomenal”, Niki Lauda described the Canadian as “an ideal racing driver”, whereas to Keke Rosberg he was “the toughest bastard I ever raced in opposition to, however utterly truthful.” Followers beloved him, as did the press of the day.

Villeneuve’s stays a favourite for followers and drivers in F1 even as we speak.

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