Villeneuve: perform or I walk away

Jacques Villeneuve says he will quit BAR, the team he has re-committed to for two more years, if it does not perform

Villeneuve: perform or I walk away

But the Canadian, who has not won a race in nearly three years, has signed a reputed three-year, £30 million deal believing BAR will get on the winning trail.

His long-running deliberations stalled the transfer market up and down the pitlane as he deliberated over remaining with close friend and former manager Craig Pollock at BAR or moving to Benetton. But after a difficult 18 months, the BAR team has started to bear fruit, culminating in 'best of the rest' fourth place finishes in the last two races.

While he has lacked the machinery to take on McLaren and Ferrari, Villeneuve's passion to win is undiminished and he sounded a clear warning to BAR to raise its game even higher.

"The team has to perform," he warned. "If it is not performing I will walk away. Everything is possible in life.

"It wasn't an easy decision to make," he added, "because there were other good options and I've had two difficult years where the promises [at BAR] didn't really come true.

"The team has been progressing and the fruits are starting to happen now and still happening. I know what I have here, but if I had moved I would have been going to promises which might or might not come true."

Villeneuve had been tipped as a viable option for McLaren or Williams, but was turned down by both teams as Williams have opted for Juan Pablo Montoya and McLaren retained David Coulthard.

"My two main options were good long term options and both teams would be winning championships, so that's why it was difficult to decide."

He said he was convinced BAR and Benetton can be winning races in the not too distant future.

"I believe BAR can do it and that's as far as I need to go in my thinking. The biggest difference is that I have been working hard on this project and it is going be nice to see it come to fruition. Both could be viable options for winning and I am positive this team will do it."

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