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Off to a flier

Steven Lynch August 23, 2013
Jacques Villeneuve on his way to victory at Silverstone in 1996, one of four wins that season © Press Association
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I noticed that Jacques Villeneuve won his fourth Grand Prix - was that some sort of record? asked Charles Cooke

Jacques Villeneuve's first victory came in the 1996 European GP at the Nurburgring. It was his fourth race - but actually he was rather unlucky not to have won his first one, in Australia earlier that year, when he took pole position for Williams and led for much of the race before dropping down to second with an oil leak.

Only two drivers have won a world championship Grand Prix earlier in their careers. Tony Brooks co-drove the winning car in only his third race, the British GP at Aintree in 1957 - Stirling Moss took over Brooks's car, which was allowed in those days, after 26 of the 80 laps.

But the Italian Giancarlo Baghetti established an unbeatable record in France in 1961, when he won his debut GP, driving a privately entered Ferrari at Reims. This excludes the first world championship season of 1950 (when Nino Farina won the first race, and Juan Manuel Fangio the second) and the American drivers who won the Indianapolis 500 when it formed part of the F1 World Championship.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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