Canadian professional auto racing driver and former Formula One World Champion Jacques Villeneuve has recently questioned the drivers’ level in Formula 1, adding that he does not like the direction in which the sport is heading. The 1997 Formula One world champion says that he does not want to create any controversy, but the eleven-GP winner in blunt and speaks to the fans directly from the heart.
Jacques Villeneuve admires exceptional champions such as Sebastian Vettel, Lewis Hamilton or Fernando Alonso, but he has emphasized for years that the driver level of some contenders in the second part of the field should be considered a problem: “The basic problem has not changed. For some teams it is necessary, due to economic reasons, to hire drivers who come to Formula One thanks to their money, not because of their talent, as it should be. A driver like Alonso or Hamilton knows exactly what he does on the track. With other pilots I have the impression that at times they probably believe to be in a video game.” – the Canadian explained, as reported by Speedweek.
During recent years, the general opinion in the paddock has been that Fernando Alonso is the most complete driver on the grid. However, Jacques Villeneuve believes that Sebastian Vettel deserves this status and sees Scuderia Ferrari’s German driver as the main favourite to win the 2017 Formula One title: “I am impressed that Sebastian Vettel has not done any mistakes this year. I do not see any weakness in him, and Ferrari have also produced a much more competitive car this season. That’s why for me Vettel is the big favorite for the 2017 title. He is the most complete driver on the grid.” – Jacques Villeneuve added.
The 1995 Indianapolis 500 Winner is less enthusiastic regarding news that Formula 1 is likely to keep its V6 engines beyond 2020, saying the sport should actually “throw them in the trash”. Villeneuve would like a return of big V8, V10 or V12 engines, or “whatever is necessary to make Formula One cars racing cars again. This must be an extreme sport and a place for gladiators, and that’s not what they are now, so I’m not surprised that people start to get bored.”