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Villeneuve not interested in Vegas bid

Jacques Villeneuve has said he's not interested in racing in the IndyCar season finale event, which is offering a $5million prize to any non-series regular who wins the event.
Former F1 world champion Jacques Villeneuve has ruled himself out of appearing in the IndyCar series season finale at Las Vegas in October, despite the lure of a $5 million prize fund that is being offered to any non-series driver who can come in and take the win from under the noses of the regular drivers.

"I'm not really interested," said the outspoken Canadian. "If you can do it with a team like Penske, you know when you sit in the car and have a missile - it will be perfect," he told Autosport magazine this week. "If you do it as a last-minute, then no ... You risk killing yourself for nothing," he said, adding: "You end up doing stupid things to get the big prize."

It's believed that the deadline for expressions of interest from drivers wanting to take part in the season finale - styled as the "world championships" - passed last month. Villeneuve had previously confirmed in March that he had been in talks with IndyCar organisers about the possibility of putting his name forward.

Villeneuve - who earlier this week was outspoken about how the current DRS-era of F1 was "useless," "boring" and "not even racing" - also took the opportunity to blast the standard of driving in IndyCar, in which he competed in the 1990s before switching to F1.

"There are some great drivers in IndyCar, but there's also a bunch who should not be there," he told Autosport magazine, describing them as "Drivers that shouldn't even be in Formula 3." No names were mentioned.

The comments will have gone down badly with IndyCar Series organisers, who set up the $5 million challenge as a way of proving to the world that with its mix of road courses, street circuits and ovals, IndyCar can boast the best drivers in the world.

Instead, Villeneuve has reiterated that "My focus is on NASCAR," which he describes as "so much fun." Villenueve returned to NASCAR Nationwide racing last month at Road America, finishing third despite a late-race accident.

"It reminds me of why I got into racing in the first place. You get in the car and you are there to do your race and nothing will get in the way of that – not regulations, nothing. It's amazing. It's human against human, beast against beast. It's great. You can muscle your way through, you can work around problems – I love it!"

Among those drivers who have been rumoured as suggestions for a wildcard entry for the IndyCar Las Vegas "world championships" are former Ferrari F1 driver Jean Alesi and current WRC star Petter Solberg. Former NASCAR and F1 star Scott Speed had also been lined up for a wildcard with Dragon Racing, but the unfortunate events during qualifying for May's Indianapolis 500 might have strained that arrangement beyond repair.




Related Pictures

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Former F1 world champion Jacques Villeneuve at Texas Motor Speedway during his 2007 season with the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. [Picture credit: Robert Laberge/Getty Images for NASCAR]
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Degree Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet V6 IndyCar, raced to a sixth-place finish Saturday, June 27, 2015, in the Verizon IndyCar Series race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Juan Pablo Montoya, driver of the #2 PPG Automotive Refinish Team Penske Chevrolet V-6 IndyCar, races to a fourth-place finish Saturday, June 27, 2015, in the Verizon IndyCar Series race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. (Photo by Perry Nelson/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Marco Andretti, Tony Kanaan, and Graham Rahal go three-wide going into Turn 1 during the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
The podium of Graham Rahal, Tony Kanaan, and Marco Andretti hoist their trophies on Victory Lane following the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California on Saturday, June 27 2015. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
The podium of Graham Rahal, Tony Kanaan, and Marco Andretti hoist their trophies on Victory Lane following the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California on Saturday, June 27 2015. (Photo by: Richard Dowdy for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon climbs into his car on pit road for his qualifying run during qualifications for the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Marco Andretti on pit lane after qualifications for the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Richard Dowdy for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon on pit lane after qualifications for the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Richard Dowdy for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves and Marco Andretti go side-by-side during practice for the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon enters Turn 3 during practice for the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon on pit lane following practice for the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Richard Dowdy for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon, Ed Carpenter, and Tony Kanaan go three-wide during practice for the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Richard Dowdy for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves, Juan Pablo Montoya, Josef Newgarden, and Sebastien Bourdais mix it up on the frontstretch during practice for the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Josef Newgarden, driver of the #67 Hartman Oil CFH Racing Chevrolet V-6 IndyCar, takes the chequered flag Sunday, June 14, 2015 to win the Verizon IndyCar Series race through the streets of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Newgarden`s teammate, Luca Filippi, driver of the #20 Fuzzy`s Vodka CFH Racing Chevrolet V-6, finished second. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Juan Pablo Montoya, driver of the #2 PPG Automotive Refinish Team Penske Chevrolet V-6 IndyCar, qualifies third-fastest Saturday, June 13, 2015 for Sunday`s Verizon IndyCar Series race through the streets of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Will Power, driver of the #1 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet V-6 IndyCar, celebrates after qualifying fastest Saturday, June 13, 2015 capturing the pole position for Sunday`s Verizon IndyCar Series race through the streets of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Power will start in the front row with teammate Simon Pagenaud, driver of the #22 Avaya Team Penske Chevrolet V-6. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon climbs in for a shakedown lap in the wet. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)

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cruachan - Unregistered

July 08, 2011 10:57 AM

A guy who scraped his way to a single F1 title in possibly the greatest car ever to race in F1 doesn't get to criticise drivers who are out there scrapping in midpack to earn themselves a better drive in indycar.



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