Villeneuve turns down big money

Jacques Villeneuve is said to have rejected a deal worth a staggering $50 million that would have led him back to the US-based CART Championship Series

Villeneuve turns down big money

Instead the former world champion has decided to remain in Formula 1 with British American Racing.

Canadian tobacco brand Player's is said to have made the offer to entice Villeneuve to join Forsythe Racing for its final season of motorsport sponsorship next year.

But team boss Jerry Forsythe claimed that Villeneuve's manager Craig Pollock wanted even more money than was offered to make the move.

"We would have loved to have been able to count on the services of someone like Jacques Villeneuve for a year," he told Le Journal. "It would have been very good for Player's and for the CART series. Unfortunately, Pollock asked for even more money.

"It's too bad because we know the idea interested Jacques, who doesn't mind the idea of returning to race in North America where he would have been able to win races. Their demands were too high. I'm not sure he will receive the same kind of offer from an F1 team at the end of his contract in 2003."

Villeneuve drove for Player's in Indy Lights and Champ Cars before moving to Formula 1 in 1996. He won the Indianapolis 500 and the CART championship in '95 driving for Forsythe's previous team which was co-owned by Barry Green.

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