Canadian Grand Prix

Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve

First grand prix 1961

Number of laps 70

Race distance 305.270KM

Circuit length 4.361KM

About the Canadian Grand Prix

The Canadian Grand Prix is currently hosted at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve and has been on the Formula 1 calendar since 1967. However, races did not take place in the years 1975, 1987, 2009 and 2020.

The circuit is named after Canadian Formula 1 driver Gilles Villeneuve who raced between 1977 and 1982, winning the Canadian Grand Prix in 1978. The Montreal street circuit was originally called Circuit Île Notre-Dame before being renamed to honour the death of Gilles Villeneuve in 1982.

Circuit Gilles Villeneuve Track Guide

The start/finish line of the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve is halfway up the pit straight and is also the first DRS straight of the track before heading into turn 1. Turns 1 and 2, similar to the Brazilian GP are known as the Senna ‘S’ turns as they go from a sharp left to a right hairpin towards turn 3.

Turns 3 and 4 make up a fast right-left chicane before carrying on flat-out through the right of turn five down to turn six. The Canadian GP is known for having its barriers close to the edge of the track leaving little runoff for drivers. Brendon Hartley fell victim to this a few years ago after being pushed wide by Lance Stroll into the barrier at turn 5.

Breaking is hard into the left of turn 6 before gaining momentum and speed through the right of turn 7, what is essentially the ‘back straight’ of the track and second DRS zone before the sharp right of turn 8.

Turn 9 is a left-hander that sets up drivers for a quick stretch down to the slowest corner of the race, a sharp right-hand hairpin at turn 10, before going flat-out through 11 and 12, through the third and final DRS zone before the chicane at the end of the track.

The right-left chicane in turns 13 and 14 have become a feature of history over the years, labeling the exit of turn 14 ‘The Wall of Champions’ as many drivers have fallen victim to it.

Race history

MoSport Park and Mont-Tremblant rotated the hosting of the Canadian GP for the first four years it was held, before Mosport Park officially held it from 1971-77. During these years we saw winners such as Jack Brabham, Jacky Ickx, Jackie Stewart, Emerson Fittipaldi and James Hunt in his Championship winning season of 1976.

Canadian Gilles Villeneuve won the first race at the Circuit Île Notre-Dame in 1978 (later named after his death in 1982). The 1982 race started with an incident in which Didier Pironi stalled his car at the front of the grid and he was then hit by Raul Boesel and Riccardo Paletti who were going at 110 mph. Paletti was aided by an F1 doctor and Pironi and was later flown to hospital.

Ayrton Senna won the first of his two victories in 1988, with another coming in 1990, before Michael Schumacher dominated the GP, winning a record eight between 1994-2004. 1999 became the year the exit on the final corner was known as the ‘Wall of Champions’ after Damon Hill, Michael Schumacher and Jacques Villeneuve all crashed at the same point.

Nico Rosberg, Juan Pablo Montoya, Carlos Sainz Jr, Jenson Button and Sebastian Vettel have all fallen victim since.

Lewis Hamilton won his first race as a rookie in F1 for McLaren in 2007, the first of many victories at the track, others coming in 2010, 2012, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2019.

Jenson Button recorded a famous win in 2011, a race that is the longest recorded to date. Rainstorms delayed the race for hours and, after a restart on lap 41, Button made his way through the field catching Vettel and forcing him into making a mistake on the last lap, winning the race.

The Grand Prix of Canada 2021

The Circuit Gilles Villeneuve is one of the faster circuits on the Formula 1 calendar compiling of three straights with DRS. However, this does not mean that drivers only have to step on the accelerator to complete a lap. Slow corners and technical sections mean that drivers have to pay close attention.

Right at the start it gets exciting with who thinks they can go around the outside in the tight combination in corners 1-2. In the past we've seen a lot of mess in this chicane. If that's not enough, the hairpin will see a lot of action just before the long, straight, culminating in an exciting point at turn fourteen: The famous Wall of Champions.

Session Date Time
Practice 1 11 June 2021 11:30 - 12:30
Practice 2 11 June 2021 15:00 - 16:00
Practice 3 12 June 2021 11:00 - 12:00
Qualifying 12 June 2021 14:00 - 15:00
Race 13 June 2021 14:00 - 16:00
Times are in America/New_York Timezone
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