The day we lost Gilles

The day we lost Gilles

Adam Cooper was only a young fan when he travelled to Zolder to the 1982 Belgian GP. Thirty years on and the F1 journalist made the trip once more to remember the day Gilles Villeneuve died

On Tuesday Jacques Villeneuve marked the 30th anniversary of the death of his legendary father Gilles by driving a 1979 Ferrari 312T4 at Fiorano. I would have loved to have been there to see it, but instead I did the next best thing and dropped into Zolder, where Gilles lost his life on May 8 1982.

I had no idea if anything had been planned to mark the anniversary, and it was pretty quiet when I arrived in the afternoon. The Villeneuve memorial sculpture behind the pits was getting a quick coat of paint, which unfortunately meant it was under a tent, albeit still visible. Apparently, a local Ferrari club planned to do something at 5pm, which explained why it was being spruced up.

To continue reading this feature...

You must have an AUTOSPORT+ subscription. Prices start from just $1.50 per week and give you full unrestriced access to all news and features. View package options? Magazine subscriber?

AUTOSPORT+

from just $1.50 per week

  • Get unlimited access to AUTOSPORT with news and views from the paddock
  • Enjoy AUTOSPORT+: subscriber-only analysis, comment and top-quality pictures
  • Explore every F1 stat in the world’s best motorsport database

Pay as you go

Read this feature right now for just

$1