A Brief History of the Montreal Grand Prix for Auto Mechanic College Students
June 15, 2016
Montreal’s yearly Grand Prix is often hailed as one of the best in the world for a multitude of reasons. The unpredictable weather and the beautifully designed Circuit Gilles Villeneuve track are just small pieces of the puzzle that make Montreal’s Grand Prix weekend one to remember. Much like the beautiful city of Montreal, its Grand Prix has a rich and exciting history.
Continue reading to discover the history behind the Montreal Grand Prix, as well as why it’s one of the best in the world.
Auto Mechanic College Students: Here’s How Montreal’s F1 Course Was Born
Prior to moving to Montreal, Canada’s Formula One race was hosted in Bowmanville, Ontario at the Canadian Tire Motorsport Park and then afterwards at the Circuit Mont-Tremblant in Quebec. The Circuit Mont-Tremblant was finally deemed unsafe for F1 racing after racer Ian Ashley had a horrendous accident that resulted in him hitting a television tower.
In 1977 Robert Peart received a call from a rep at the Labatt beer company asking if a Grand Prix track could be constructed in Canada. After envisioning a track on the man-made Île Notre-Dame, he phoned the rep back 30 minutes later to confirm that it was possible. The new Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, which was then called the Circuit Ile Notre-Dame, was constructed on the island. Construction of the course was rapid, beginning in July of 1978 and the first Grand Prix race was held there just three months later. As you might learn throughout your auto mechanic career, the only changes that have since been made to the track are the placement of the crew pits to give them more space.
What Auto Mechanic Certification Pros Need to Know About the First Grand Prix at Montreal
The first race at the new Montreal course was held on Sunday, October 8th, 1978. As auto mechanic college students might know, the winner of the inaugural Montreal Grand Prix was Quebec native Gilles Villeneuve. He crossed the finish line to grab the victory in front of 72,000 fans and then was handed his trophy by then Prime Minister Pierre-Elliot Trudeau. The track on Île Notre-Dame would later be re-named after Gilles Villeneuve in 1982 after he tragically lost his life at the 1982 Belgian Grand Prix—but Gilles Villeneuve`s legacy lives on every time the Montreal Grand Prix gets underway.
Auto Mechanic College Graduates Know that the Montreal Grand Prix Has History
Since its beginnings, Montreal’s Grand Prix always excites, as it has been a host to numerous historical Grand Prix moments that have gone down in the books. In 1994, Michael Shumacher won the first of his seven Montreal Grand Prix victories, making him the Montreal Grand Prix’s most successful driver. Montreal was also host to the two Schumacher brothers, Ralf and Michael, being part of the first sibling 1-2 finish in Grand Prix history in 2001.
Montreal’s Grand Prix is one of the most exciting F1 races in the world, and its history is far from over! Just this past weekend, fans arrived by the thousands to see their favourite drivers in action:
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