Formula 1 and Indy Series champion Jacques Villeneuve will drive his father Gilles’s 1979 Ferrari 312 T4 Formula 1 car at the Fiorano test track on May 8 in tribute to the 30th anniversary of his father’s death.
In 1982, Formula 1 witnessed the talents of the Canadian race car driver. Regarded as the fastest ever to compete in Formula 1 by fans and fellow drivers, Villeneuve’s short career with Scuderia Ferrari was highlighted by six grand prix victories as well as a remarkably ferocious wheel-to-wheel battle for second versus Renee Arnoux during the closing stages of the 1979 French Grand Prix, all of which earned him a legendary status while driving a series of dangerous and ill-handling Ferraris.
According to a statement from Ferrari, Jacque Villeneuve’s outing in the 312 T4 would be “a fitting occasion to evoke the memory of a man who has and always will have a place of honor in the history of Ferrari.”
Villeneuve legacy can still be witnessed at Ferrari today, as a bronze statue of Gilles stands at the entrance of Ferrari’s Fiorano Test Track. What’s more, a corner of the San Marino GP’s Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari circuit is named after him and a Canadian flag is painted on the third slot of the track’s starting grid.
A hero at home, the Circuit Villeneuve in Montreal holds the Canadian Grand Prix and is also named in his honor.