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Former F1 and Indy champion Jacques Villeneuve is playing down reports that he was offered a ride with the new Lotus Renault GP team for next season. The French Canadian driver recently threw in the towel on any potential return to grand prix racing after repeated attempts to get back on the grid, determined to break into NASCAR instead and getting his fix racing Skodas on ice in the interim.

According to reports, Lotus offered him a drive on its IndyCar team for this past season that would have led to an F1 seat with the automaker's newly acquired squad for 2011. The reports were spurred by Villeneuve's reported visit to Lotus to meet with Gino Rosato, one of the many former Ferrari employees who've since defected to Lotus – a visit which Villeneuve said was purely social and not professional. Rosato, like Villeneuve, hails from the Canadian province of Quebec.

Jacques confirms that an offer for an IndyCar drive was made (if he could bring sponsors' cash along with him), but not for an F1 drive, pointing out that Lotus' decision to get into F1 was only made more recently. Besides, insists Villeneuve, he had no interest in going back into IndyCar racing since he already mastered that series in his earlier days. Well, he already won the F1 championship too, but that didn't seem to stop him from taking another stab at it. And then another. And then a few more.

[Source: ESPN | Image: Robert Cianflone/Getty]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      Just a note, JV is the only man who won Indy first and only then F1.
      • 4 Years Ago
      How many NASCAR stars have made a go at F1? Oh right, none. Sure, being at the front in NASCAR might be difficult, but it seems anyone can get in a carburetorated car of the future and hang with the pack.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I just have a very hard time understanding how someone with a Formula 1 background can find NASCAR at all challenging.
        • 4 Years Ago
        So you've driven both and have first hand knowledge or are you just assuming? I think JPM, Scott Speed have found "driving in circles" pretty challenging and both have said as much.
        • 4 Years Ago
        The problem with NASCAR is that the racing would be exactly the same if the cars were going 1/4 the speed.
        • 4 Years Ago
        stevieh, I was not replying to you genius, I was replying to the guy that started the thread ...but thanks for playing buddy. ;-)
        • 4 Years Ago
        as they get older it is easier to just turn left, NASCAR does not need as much skill as F1 or WRC. Surprised they don't put stickers on the car representing a driver
      • 4 Years Ago
      At the point Jacques is at in his career he has earned the right to do whatever he wants regardless of what the blog community thinks. He is a true competitor and like any competitive person he wants to do something that is challenging. Evidently he finds NASCAR challenging and while many here don't like it that's TS. I doubt anyone on here knows what it takes to drive in NASCAR, F1 or even a shifter kart, I certainly don't. That's why I tend to believe that the people who do actually drive have a better idea of what is difficult than I do.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Personally I'd take some more of that ice racing over NASCAR or F1.
      • 4 Years Ago
      as much as I liked JV in his days, he is yesterday's man, if Schuey could not achieve that much in his comeback year with a top tier team, JV's future F1 career should be played on Playstation rather than in real life
      • 4 Years Ago
      Good choice. That team is going no where.
      • 4 Years Ago
      he's too old for this sh!t.
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