Former F1 champ joins Formula E grid

The 1997 Formula 1 World Champion Jacques Villeneuve has signed for Venturi for the 2015-16 Formula E season.

The Canadian has been involved in testing the Monaco-based team’s car in post-season testing, having been closely linked with the sport during its inaugural season. The move marks the Canadian’s return to open wheel racing for the first time since leaving Formula 1 in 2006.

Speaking at his announcement, Villeneuve commented: “This is the first time in several years that I will participate in a full championship. I am excited because the atmosphere while working alongside the Venturi team is great and that has a very big influence. Also I know Stephane Sarrazin well, we trust each other.”

Gildo Pastor, Venturi Automobiles CEO, says: “It is a true pleasure to welcome the very great champion Jacques Villeneuve. He is the first Formula 1 World Champion to join Formula E as a driver. In addition to his 1997 title and his numerous victories in F1, no one has forgotten his victory in the Indianapolis 500 or in the IndyCar World Series.”

“He grew up in Monaco, we crossed paths so many times in childhood, so he will be at home with Venturi. I am very happy with the experienced and talented duo of Jacques and Stéphane.”

Villeneuve has spent recent years racing in a range of close wheel categories, including American and Brazilian stock cars, V8 supercars and, most recently, the World Rallycross Championship.

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