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Formula 1 Canadian GP

Leclerc honours Gilles Villeneuve with Canadian GP helmet tribute

Ferrari Formula 1 driver Charles Leclerc is running a Gilles Villeneuve tribute helmet at this weekend's Canadian Grand Prix.

Charles Leclerc, Ferrari.

Villeneuve scored his maiden victory for the Italian team at the first Montreal F1 event in 1978, and after his death at the 1982 Belgian GP, the track was renamed in his honour.

Last May Leclerc drove Villeneuve's 1979 Ferrari 312T4 at Fiorano to mark the 40th anniversary of the Zolder accident and the helmet represents another step for the Monegasque driver in honouring the Ferrari legend.

The design was created by Leclerc's regular helmet painter, Adrien Paviot.

"Gilles Villeneuve, he was such an incredible driver," said Leclerc in a Ferrari video.

"So much passion he had for Ferrari, you could see straight away when he was going out on track. This is my special helmet for the weekend, it's inspired by the design Gilles used to have."

Speaking last year about his outing in Villeneuve's car, Leclerc made it clear that it was a memorable experience for him.

"It was very special," he said. "I mean the experience was amazing. The cars were very different back then.

Charles Leclerc's helmet

Charles Leclerc's helmet

Photo by: Ferrari

"As soon as I got into the car you can really feel that the safety that we have now is just incredible, and back then to push so much those cars with so little safety, you have to be quite mentally strong.

"It was nice and very playful also as a car, so it was cool."

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Other drivers to run special helmets this weekend include Valtteri Bottas, who has gone for a lumberjack theme designed by his partner Tiffany Cromwell, and Lance Stroll, who intends to auction his home race design to raise funds for those affected by the recent wildfires in Canada.

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