Jacques Villeneuve

Jacques Villeneuve won the 1995 Indianapolis 500, the 1995 CART Championship and the 1997 Formula One Championship. He is only the third driver to achieve the feat after Mario Andretti and Emerson Fittipaldi. |  Villeneuve has starred in a 2001 Sylvester Stallone film, ‘Driven’. |  He released his music album, ‘Private Paradise’ in 2007.


Name: Jacques Villeneuve
DOB: Apr 9 1971
Place Of Birth: St-Jean-sur-Richelieu
Nationality: Canadian
Most Races For: BAR - 81
No. Of Races: 163
Jacques Villeneuve

Drinking and driving can have serious consequences. But if one wants to get high on life, he needs Jacques Villeneuve as the bartender, for only Villeneuve holds the secret to make what can be termed as a “cocktail of careers”. A World Champion in Formula One, a lyricist and an actor, Jacques Villeneuve is anything but stolid. Son of the great Gilles Villeneuve, Jacques was born on April 9, 1971, in St-Jean-Sur-Richelieu, Quebec, Canada. Hailing from a family of racers (his father and his uncle Jacques), Villeneuve probably inherited the racing gene.

He participated in the Italian Formula Three series from 1989 to 1991. In 1992, he was second in the Japanese Formula Three series. In 1994, Villeneuve competed in Champ Car and won the ‘Rookie of the Year’ award. He won the 1995 Indianapolis 500 and made an entry in F1.

Sir Frank Williams, impressed with the flair that Villeneuve exhibited through his driving was already testing the Williams’ car with him and gave him the racing opportunity in 1996. Villeneuve lived up to his family’s repute and started from pole position and finished second on podium in Australia after an oil spill cost him his first place in his debut race. In a stunning season finish for a rookie, he ended up on podium 11 times and won four races, ahead of reigning champion Michael Schumacher and placed himself second in the Drivers’ Championship.

To put it precisely, Villeneuve’s drive to the World Championship title in 1997 was just what dreams are made of – seven wins, 10 poles, eight podiums and 81 points. It was just his second year into Formula One and Villeneuve was already teaching the invincible Michael Schumacher a quick lesson on overtaking. In the final race of the season at Jerez, Schumacher, already miffed with the dexterity in Villeneuve’s driving, tried to eliminate him by steering towards him when he was overtaking Schumacher from the inside edge. The cars made contact while Villeneuve, determined to get under the German’s skin, stuck to his guns sending him out into the gravel. Though he lost his position and finished third, he snatched victory from the jaws of defeat to characterize himself as a highly competent driver. The exit of Renault from F1 left Williams out in the cold as it could not have the services of the race winning Renault V10 anymore.

Villeneuve stuck to the Williams team in 1998, driving the Mechachrome engine that lacked the quality of the Renaults.
The newly crowned champion did not prove to be impressive with a fifth place and two podium finishes in that season.

In 1999, Villeneuve joined the British American Racing (BAR) team which had stirred some hype before the season, but could not do anything more. The Canadian had a disappointing season with points drying up for him. In 2000, despite speculation of him rejoining the Williams team he was still with BAR who had acquired Honda engines. This season he upped the ante and finished seventh in the Drivers’ Championship. The following two seasons he stayed with BAR-Honda but did not get much success. In 2004, after sitting out almost for the entire season, he was signed up by the Mild Seven Renault F1 team for the last three races. He did not finish in points, and he was not expected to do so either with the underperforming engines that the team was using.

Villeneuve retired from Formula One after racing for the Sauber team in 2005 and 2006. Although his final years in the sport did not propel him to any further victories, he would be recalled as a champion; and you cannot deny him that honour ever.

-Anup Pareek

  • GPs
YearTeamClaGPs WinsPolesPods FLsPts
2006BMW Sauber15th1200007
Total 1631113239235

Jacques Villeneuve - HEAD TO HEAD (TEAM-MATES)

Jacques Villeneuve - Season Performance

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  • Jacques Villeneuve won the 1995 Indianapolis 500, the 1995 CART Championship and the 1997 Formula One Championship. He is only the third driver to achieve the feat after Mario Andretti and Emerson Fittipaldi.
  • Villeneuve has starred in a 2001 Sylvester Stallone film, ‘Driven’.
  • He released his music album, ‘Private Paradise’ in 2007.


"If I knew I couldn't win races, I would have stayed in the States. "
- Jacques Villeneuve


Most successful drivers to have raced with Jacques Villeneuve

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