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Atlas F1 News Service

Dennis Slams Penalised Villeneuve

Tuesday June 20th, 2000

McLaren chief Ron Dennis has slammed Jacques Villeneuve for his driving in last Sunday's Canadian Grand Prix.

Villeneuve attempted to pass David Coulthard at the Casino hairpin late in the race, but locked his brakes, sending him straight on into Ralf Schumacher, taking both Villeneuve and Schumacher out of the race. Villeneuve was penalised 25 seconds for the incident by the stewards after the completion of the race, as was Pedro Diniz who had forced Pedro de la Rosa off the track sixteen laps earlier.

"Villeneuve drove in a way that was verging on the kamikaze. He had nothing to lose and was driving in Canada in front of his home crowd and was clearly on a mission," said Dennis

"At the end of day he took himself and Ralf Schumacher out of the race and that justifies the approach Mika took in opening few corners of not being so aggressive. After that he cost us one and half seconds a lap."

Villeneuve admitted that he had made a mistake: "I was pushing hard to make up some places and I guess I tried a little bit too hard."

Meanwhile, Ralf Schumacher who was taken out by Villeneuve's actions said: "Villeneuve apologised immediately so the matter is over for me."