Former Formula 1 Champion Jacques Villeneuve to Make WGI Debut in Zippo 200

Legendary Father, Gilles, Claimed Victory at The Glen in 1979 U.S. Grand Prix

Jacques Villeneuve

Jacques Villeneuve will make his WGI debut when the green flag drops on the Zippo 200 at 2:00 PM on Saturday, August 7. (Photo: Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Racing legend Gilles Villeneuve claimed his only victory at Watkins Glen International in the 1979 U.S. Grand Prix and over 30 years later, his son Jacques will finally get his chance to reach Gatorade Victory Lane at the historic road course.  The former Formula One World champion will make his WGI debut driving the No. 32 Dollar General Toyota for Braun Racing during the Zippo 200 on Saturday, August 7.  The green flag will drop on the Zippo 200 at 2:00 PM.

“The name Villeneuve is synonymous with winning and road racing so we are thrilled to have Jacques finally coming to The Glen,” said Michael Printup, president of Watkins Glen International.  “I remember watching his father growing up as a kid and as a long-time F1 fan I cannot wait to see what Jacques can do during the Zippo 200.  I hope our friends in Canada come visit our beautiful facility to enjoy the races, experience the fun and excitement we offer, and cheer on one of their own.” 

“I was very disappointed with our end result at Road America,” he said. “We had such a great car and a fantastic team and to not get the win was frustrating. It was difficult to think we’d have to wait until our return to Montreal to try again. I am very much looking forward to the opportunity to race at Watkins Glen for my first time with this talented group. I think it will be a lot of fun and I hope to end this race in victory lane.”

Villeneuve has made three previous Nationwide Series starts with the Mooresville-based team, most recently behind the wheel of the No. 32 Dollar General Toyota at Elkhart Lake’s Road America. Narrowly missing the pole, he started from the second position and was a contender for the win until an electrical issue ended his race on the final lap. He is also scheduled to pilot the No. 32 in the Nationwide Series’ return to Circuit Gilles Villeneuve (Montreal) in late August.

The Canadian driver has found success in racing that is matched by very few. Villeneuve has captured world championships in both the Indy Car World Series and Formula One and was the winner of the 1995 Indianapolis 500, a feat accomplished only by two other drivers. Driving the Dollar General Toyota at Indianapolis Motor Speedway last weekend he joined Juan Pablo Montoya as the only two drivers in history to compete in all three of the historic track’s premier motorsports events: the Indianapolis 500, the U.S. Grand Prix and the Brickyard 400.

Tickets for the Heluva Good! Sour Cream Dips at The Glen, NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, Zippo 200 NASCAR Nationwide Series and Crown Royal 200, Rolex Sports Car Series races, August 5-8 are still on-sale.  Fans can purchase tickets by calling the Watkins Glen International ticket office at 866-461-RACE (7223) or logging on to the official website, or at the Information Center of Corning located on Market Street, in downtown Corning, NY.  Tickets, gift certificates and track merchandise can all be purchased at The Shop located at 2 North Franklin Street in downtown Watkins Glen.  The Shop is open Monday-Saturday 9-5 and Sunday 9-4.

© 2017 Watkins Glen International


ISC Track Sites