Jacques Villeneuve

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Jacques Joseph Charles Villeneuve, OQ (French pronunciation: [ʒak vilnœv]) (born April 9, 1971), is a French-Canadian musician and former automobile racing driver. He is the son of Formula One driver Gilles Villeneuve, and is the namesake of his uncle (also a racer). Jacques Villeneuve won the 1995 CART Championship, the 1995 Indianapolis 500 and the 1997 Formula One World Championship, making him only the third driver after Mario Andretti and Emerson Fittipaldi to achieve such a feat. To date, no other Canadian has won the Indianapolis 500 or the F1 Drivers' title.

Following two successful years in CART, Villeneuve moved into Formula One with the front running Williams team, alongside Damon Hill. In his debut season, Villeneuve challenged Hill for the title, winning four races and taking the fight to the final round in Japan. But the Canadian retired and Hill won the title. Villeneuve, however, did win the following year's title, this time challenging Michael Schumacher and once again taking it to the final round in Jerez. In the race, the two collided, resulting in Schumacher's retirement and subsequent disqualification from the 1997 World Championship, with Villeneuve going on to take third place in the race, and the overall title.

The last year in which Villeneuve would win a championship level race and finish the season in the top three was 1997, and his career declined afterwards. Renault had pulled out of Formula One for 1998 and Villeneuve's Williams team had to fare with less competitive Mecachrome engines. Villeneuve moved to the newly formed British American Racing team in 1999 and stayed there for the next four seasons but, following poor results he was replaced by former British Formula Three Champion Takuma Sato. After a short run with Renault at the end of 2004, Villeneuve moved to the Sauber team for the 2005 season where he was outscored by his less experienced teammate Felipe Massa. The Sauber team were bought out by BMW for the following season and Villeneuve struggled to score points, taking seven points from eleven rounds before suffering an injury in Germany. The Canadian was replaced by Robert Kubica and soon BMW and Villeneuve parted company.

Outside Formula One, Villeneuve has taken on several new careers: in sportscar racing, racing for Peugeot in the 2007 and 2008 24 Hours of Le Mans, jumping to NASCAR in August 2007 and racing as an invited driver in the Argentinian Top Race V6 series, and in music, so far releasing one album titled Private Paradise.

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