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Jacques Villeneuve

Professional racing driver

Formula One World Champion, Indy 500 Winner & IndyCar Series Champion Canadian Jacques Villeneuve won the 1997 Formula One World Championship for the Williams-Renault team, a remarkable feat given that he achieved it in only his second full season of Formula One motor racing, and against arch rival Michael Schumacher. In his first season in Formula One, 1996, he finished 2nd in the World Championship, an astonishing achievement in only first season at the pinnacle of world motor sport.

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  • English
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Jacques Villeneuve's 2024 biography

About Jacques Villeneuve

Jacques Villeneuve is one of the most widely renowned Formula 1 stars, a World Champion who achieved meteoric success and founded the team which is today the all conquering Mercedes Benz F1 team. He is the last driver to have won a World Championship for the famous Williams Formula 1 team, adding his name to an impressive list of champions including Alan Jones, Nigel Mansell, Alain Prost and Damon Hill.

The son of Canadian Formula 1 star Gilles Villeneuve, one of Enzo Ferrari’s favourite drivers and renowned for his spectacular driving style, it was perhaps inevitable that Jacques would follow his father into racing.

Tragically Gilles lost his life at the wheel of his Ferrari during the 1982 Belgian Grand Prix weekend. Far from causing Jacques to reconsider a career in motor racing, he forged ahead. Ultimately he would show supreme talent behind the wheel, winning the North American Indycar Series and the Indy 500 before transferring to Formula 1.

Qualifying on pole position in his debut Formula 1 race at the 1996 Australian Grand Prix, Jacques went on to finish a remarkable second in the World Championship.

Driving for Williams, Jacques then won the 1997 Formula One World Championship despite facing strong competition from team mate Damon Hill and a determined challenge from Ferrari’s Michael Schumacher.

Winning the ultimate prize in Formula 1 came after winning the Indycar series in the United States in 1995, during which he also won the world-famous Indianapolis 500. He is one of only three remaining drivers to have achieved this ‘triple’, alongside former World Champions Mario Andretti and Emerson Fittipaldi.

His Formula One career continued until 2006, including 6 years driving for BAR-Honda which was a team he co-founded and owned. Today that team is the dominant Mercedes AMG F1 team. Since then he has competed in a wide range of motor sports series. This includes twice competing in the famous Le Mans 24 Hours sports car race, driving for Peugeot, finishing 2nd in 2008.

In 2022 he successfully raced in the Daytona 500 race, one of the major events in the NASCAR calendar in the United States. In doing so he joins Mario Andretti in becoming one of only two drivers to have competed in the Daytona 500, Le Mans 24 Hours sports car race and Formula 1.

Jacques continues to be closely involved in Formula 1, attending Grands Prix and commentating for French television. He lives in Italy with his wife and children and is trilingual in English, French and Italian.

Jacques Villeneuve's 2024 speaking fees

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