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“It’ll be special because it’s a standout race”: Former F1 Champion announces his return to the NASCAR Cup Series in 2022

Somin Bhattacharjee

"It'll be special because it's a standout race": Former F1 Champion announces his return to the NASCAR Cup Series in 2022

1997 F1 World Champion Jacques Villeneuve will participate in the Daytona 500 race of the NASCAR Cup Series next month. 

The Daytona 500 is a 500-mile race at the Daytona International Speedway in Florida and is a part of the NASCAR Cup Series. It’s one of the most coveted races in motorsports and carries the largest sum of prize money among all NASCAR races.

In an interview with, Villeneuve confirmed that he’d join Team Hezeberg to bid for a spot on the Daytona starting grid in February.

The Canadian driver previously won the 1995 Indianapolis 500 and the 1997 F1 World Championship. He took part in testing at the Daytona Beach Track earlier this week and announced that he’d try to qualify for the race on 20th February with the Dutch team.

This isn’t the first NASCAR racing experience for Villeneuve, as the 50-year old has been competing in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series since 2019.

“It would be amazing,” the former Williams driver said. “The last time I was in NASCAR in North America was quite a few years. I think it was Sonoma Raceway the last time so it was a lot of years ago.”

Also read: When NFL legend Tom Brady met F1 star Daniel Ricciardo at the 2018 Monaco GP

Villeneuve is looking forward to lining up for this iconic NASCAR event

Before lining up on the grid, Villeneuve has to set up a time in Qualifying that deems him eligible for the race. The man from Quebec said he is really looking forward to his outing in Florida, calling it a ‘special race’, which is very hard to get into.

“It is a very special race to participate in, and it’s hard to get into show when you have to qualify on time or in the duels.” he said.

“So it makes it a bit more stressful, and making the show would already be something special.”

Team Hezeberg was founded by former racing driver Toine Hezemans and Dutch businessman Ernst Berg and Reaume Brother Racing in 2021. They mainly plan to focus on competing in road course races for 2022.

“It’s a small team and there’s still a long way to go,” said Villeneuve. “Right now we’re focusing on Daytona and hopefully we’ll do more races.”

Also read: Former world champion reveals how he dealt with pressure in F1

About the author

Somin Bhattacharjee

Somin Bhattacharjee


Somin Bhattacharjee is an F1 editor at The SportsRush and has written more than 2000 articles. He holds a bachelor's degree in business administration and considers sports to be a part of his life. Somin has been a fan of Scuderia Ferrari since 2010 and his favorite driver is none another than the legendary Fernando Alonso. Other than longing for a Ferrari Championship win once again, Somin spends his free time playing football and basketball.

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