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Canada Grand Prix: Can Button repeat last year's dramatic win?

Hamilton is favourite but Button won in Canada last year

Button is 12.5n/a to repeat last year's triumph, while team mate Lewis Hamilton, despite all his misfortunes so far this season, is 5.04/1 favourite.

Last year's Canadian Grand Prix was the most exciting of the season so will we see a repeat of the drama this weekend?

If there's one thing that drives me mad listening to commentators and pundits it is when they go into "it wasn't like that in my day" mode.

Times change in every sport, and I want to hear people embracing the best of the modern era and enjoying what's in front of them. It's good to hear experienced experts who can bring context and comparison with the greats who have gone before, but not if they start belittling the modern generation.

So I can't say I was too thrilled by the opening shots of Jacques Villeneuve as he prepares to join Sky's commentary team for this weekend's Canadian Grand Prix. He's all over the papers this morning accusing today's F1 stars of being "daddy's boys who drive as if they were playing a video game."

It's precisely because the likes of Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel take chances and race with aggression that the sport has become so good to watch. Who wants to see a procession of 175mph advertising billboards never daring to overtake each other? The success of the recent Senna film underlines how the sport depends on risk and danger for its appeal.

It's ironic that he should be grumbling about driving standards this weekend because last year's Canadian Grand Prix was arguably the most exciting of the season. Jenson Button worked his way from 18th to win it on the final lap when Vettel made a mistake and let him past. The German made that blunder precisely because he was under pressure from aggressive driving behind him.

If only Button would recapture some of that spirit. He's slid to seventh place in the standings with 45 points, some 31 behind championship leader Fernando Alonso, and that despite being one of the six different drivers who have won the six races so far. There's little optimism around him doing better either. Button is 12.5n/a to repeat last year's triumph, while team mate Lewis Hamilton, despite all his misfortunes so far this season, is 5.04/1 favourite.

The biggest question of the weekend will surround Red Bull who have been ordered to make modifications to the floor of the car which brought them wins in Bahrain and Monaco. The FIA have effectively ruled that two tiny holes near to the tyres were an attempt to create an illegal "double diffuser" by different means. Team boss Christian Horner has tried hard to play down the impact of the ruling, but it won't help them to lose some downforce when by their own admission the car doesn't have the clear advantages that Vettel enjoyed on his way to the title last year.

Horner's outfit currently lead the table, but the technical change suggests it could be a good time lay Red Bull for the constructors' championship at 2.0811/10.


Five things you might not know about Jacques Villeneuve

1. Born April 1971 in Quebec, he was raised in Monaco where his F1 driver dad Gilles was based. Uncle Jacques also drove in Formula One as well as CART racing in the States and was a snowmobile champion.

2. HE returned to Canada to begin his own motor racing career, enrolling at the age of 15 in the same Jim Russell racing drivers' school where his dad and uncle had been taught.

3. His first racing licence was granted in Andorra because at 17 he was still too young to be given one by the Canadian authorities.

4. At different times he was engaged to Dannii Minogue and then American ballerina Ellen Green - but eventually married Parisienne girlfriend Johanna Martinez in 2006. They have two boys, but divorced in 2009.

5. He is one of only three drivers, along with Mario Andretti and Emerson Fittipaldi, to have won the Indianapolis 500, the Indy Car championship and the Formula One world title.

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07 June 2012

Formula One

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