Former F1 Champion Jacques Villeneuve on Daytona 500: “I Don’t Want to Make This Long Trip for Just Pleasure. I Don’t Go There as a Tourist”

Published 01/13/2022, 2:50 AM EST


Jacques Villeneuve, the 1997 F1 champion, has made his intentions clear regarding the Daytona 500. It was earlier reported that the Canadian could test for and potentially race in the most iconic race on the NASCAR calendar.

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But now, Villeneuve has come out with a statement that confirms those reports of not just testing, but going all the way. A statement made by the driver on Twitter reads, “I’m going to Daytona for two days. The goal, and I don’t hide it, is to participate in the Daytona 500 in Feb. I don’t want to make this long trip for just pleasure. I don’t go there as a tourist.”

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“It is a very special race” –  F1 champion Jacques Villeneuve

Villeneuve, who is no stranger to American motorsports or NASCAR, stated that to race at Daytona “would be amazing.” He said, “It is a very special race to participate in, and it’s hard to get into show when you have to qualify on time or in the duels. So it makes it a bit more stressful, and making the show would already be something special.”

The Canadian has been a regular in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series for the last two years for Team Hezeberg, alongside Loris Hezemans. In fact, it was the point when Hezeman wasn’t cleared by NASCAR to take part in a Cup Series race that pointed his teammate, the veteran Villeneuve, towards Daytona.

“That’s how we ended up getting together and bringing experience to the team, but right now it’s a new team,” Villeneuve said.

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Despite his and his team’s current focus being on Daytona, Villeneuve remained hopeful to enter more NASCAR races in the future. The 50-year-old is already a Formula 1 champion and the winner of the famed Indianapolis 500 in 1995.

So him trying to further his collection of laurels in his already prestigious racing career makes sense.

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And although he would be by no means a favorite for the race, Jacques Villeneuve could turn out to be the dark horse.

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Shaharyar

500 articles

Shaharyar is a Formula 1 & NASCAR writer at EssentiallySports. A graduate in Journalism from Amity University, he has been a passionate follower of motorsports for better part of the decade. A Max Verstappen and Ferrari supporter, he dreams of a pairing of the two in future.

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