Circuit Gilles Villeneuve


Circuit Details

1 January, 1978 - 00:00

Gilles Villeneuve History

The circuit is located in a part of the city of Montreal known as Parc Jean-Drapeau. The park is named after the mayor of Montreal who was responsible for the organization of Expo 67. The circuit lies on Île Notre-Dame, a man-made island in the St. Lawrence River most of which was originally built up for the Expo. Also the neighbouring island Île Sainte-Hélène had been artificially enlarged for the fairgrounds and a prominent remnant of the fair, the Biosphere can be regularly seen during televison coverage of racing events. Almost half of the track ? from the hairpin turn until after the pit area ? runs alongside the Bassin olympique, a huge rectangular basin which was created for the rowing and canoeing events of Montreal's 1976 Summer Olympics.

Originally named the Île Notre-Dame Circuit. It was renamed in honour of Canadian Formula One driver Gilles Villeneuve, father of Jacques Villeneuve, following his death in 1982.

Barriers run close to the circuit and many experienced drivers have been caught out by them. A particularly famous part of the circuit is the wall on the outside of the exit of the final chicane before the start/finish straight. In 1999 the wall, which bears the name Bienvenue au Québec ("Welcome to Quebec") giving it the nickname "Mur du Québec" (Quebec Wall), ended the race of three Formula One World Champions, Damon Hill, Michael Schumacher and Jacques Villeneuve along with FIA GT champion Ricardo Zonta. Since then the wall has been nicknamed "The Wall of Champions". In recent years 2009 world champion Jenson Button (2005) and 2010 World Champion Sebastian Vettel (2011) have also fallen victim to the wall. Juan Pablo Montoya (2006) and Vitantonio Liuzzi (2007) have also crashed there, while in 2010, Kamui Kobayashi also collided with the wall.

Source: Wikipedia