Hard racing not hard to call: Vettel’s Canadian GP win should have stood | Richard Williams

F1 connoisseurs were virtually unanimous in their views over the penalty that not only robbed Sebastian Vettel in Canada but also ruined a classic finish between the world’s best two drivers

As a simmering Sebastian Vettel stalked into the room where the top three drivers in a grand prix wipe away their sweat and prepare to mount the podium, the only vacant seat was one under a large portrait of another Ferrari driver, a hero of the past. As well as being the man who gave his name to the circuit on which the Canadian Grand Prix had just been held, Gilles Villeneuve remains a symbol of motor racing at its most daring and flamboyant.

Villeneuve was killed in 1982, halfway through his fifth season with the Italian team. He never won a world championship but Enzo Ferrari placed him alongside Tazio Nuvolari as the greatest of all those who had driven for him. Like Ferrari, the fans loved him for the way he allowed his emotions to show in his driving, for the way he would tear into the pits on three wheels, refusing to accept defeat, and – most of all – for the legendary duel with René Arnoux at Dijon over the last two laps of the 1979 French Grand Prix, the epitome of no-quarter wheel-to-wheel combat.

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