French-Canadian driver, Gilles Villeneuve, comfortably won the United States Grand Prix at Watkins Glen on Sunday (7 October).
French-Canadian driver, Gilles Villeneuve, comfortably won the United States Grand Prix at Watkins Glen on Sunday (7 October). It was Villeneuve's third Grand Prix win of the season, and the sixth for his team, Ferrari.
SYNOPSIS: Villeneuve at the wheel before the race began in steady rain. In these conditions, Alan Jones, the Saudi-Williams team driver would need luck seeking his fifth Grand Prix in a row.
The drenched conditions were to take their toll ... only seven of the original twenty-four cars finished the fifty-nine lap race, one of the smallest ever finishing fields at Watkins Glen.
Villeneuve took the lead only three hundred yards from the start, and held it until Jones overtook him in the thirty-first lap. The Canadian's performance was brilliant, considering his team had changed the engine in his car after the morning practice session.
Challenging strongly here, Jones later had to drop out ... his right rear wheel spun off after he made a pit stop to change to dry weather tyres. This mishap, when Jones was leading, robbed the Saudi-Williams team of a possible sixth win for the season.
Villeneuve was going so strongly, he lapped the stragglers in the field. And, once Jones was gone, he had no serious rival among the survivors.
For the Canadian, it was just a matter of keeping his car on the track. Jean Pierre Jabouille of France didn't last the distance, and Villeneuve went on to win by a mile and a half margin.
His triumph in the last race of the season took Villeneuve to forty-seven points in the world drivers' championship. He finished four points behind South African Jody Scheckter, who had already clinched the title before this race.