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Ferrari to mark 30th anniversary of Gilles Villeneuve's death

NEWS STORY
08/04/2012

Ferrari has revealed that it is to mark the thirtieth anniversary of the death of the legendary racer Gilles Villeneuve with a special event at Fiorano.

"His memory is still vivid and alive in the minds of many at Maranello," said the team earlier today, "his talent, his speed, his bravery which bordered on recklessness, all go to make his name still hugely popular with our fans, even among younger ones who have only been able to see him on replays of his races or read about him in stories written by journalists.

"We have decided to commemorate this date in a special way, bringing together the names of Ferrari and Villeneuve in their natural environment, the race track. On Tuesday 8 May, Gilles' son Jacques will take to the Fiorano track at the wheel of the 312 T4 driven by his father in 1979, the season that he and Jody Scheckter brought the Scuderia the Constructors' title, with the South African also taking the Drivers' World Championship. It will be a fitting occasion to evoke the memory of a man who has and always will have a place of honour in the history of Ferrari."

Villeneuve, who won just six Grands Prix during his brief but mercurial career, contested all but one of his sixty-seven races with Ferrari - his debut being with McLaren (Silverstone 1977) - was killed during qualifying for the 1982 Belgian Grand Prix at Zolder.

Thirty years after his tragic death, fans of a certain age still regard him as the most exciting talent ever to have graced the sport, whilst younger fans, courtesy of YouTube, get to appreciate how much the sport has changed in the years since.

While Jacques might have won the title that evaded his legendary father, the 1997 world champion never quite matched his father in terms of charisma or commitment. Nonetheless, the sight of his in his father's 312 T4 is sure to be an emotional moment for all.

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