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Formula 1 racing still remains one of the world’s most popular motor sports. French Formula 1 racing really took off when the French Grand Prix joined in 1950. The original home for this race was the Reims track. This triangular track was created from public roads. Drivers loved this circuit because they could attain great speeds. Some reached speeds of over 160 km/h, even during the 1950’s! The first championship race was won by Juan Manuel Fangio, and he won the following year as well. Street circuit races of this type were a huge success during the early days of French racing.
When anyone considers French Formula 1, they immediately think of Le Mans, the 24-hour sports car race that gained much acclaim. Formula 1, however, has only visited this race one time, in 1967. Perhaps one of the more memorable French Formula 1 races occurred in 1979 at Dijon. Comprised of all racers from France, Jean-Pierre Jabouille became the very first Frenchman to win a championship round in his own country. The epic battle for second place is what really stands out for many people who are familiar with the race. Gilles Villeneuve and Rene Arnoux took part in an incredibly dramatic final lap to decide the victor.
French Formula 1 racing is vital to the sport. Many of the current drivers owe their success to those who came before them. French racing pioneers set the stage for future generations to follow in their footsteps. Racing has an impact on the world that is not unlike that of soccer. Drivers come from many different countries to compete against the very best in the world. Aspiring drivers still watch vintage races to gain a competitive edge. Many of those drivers come from France, where Formula 1 racing reigns supreme.