Former F1 winner John Watson has backed Jacques Villeneuve in slamming the sport’s current drivers.
Although signed by the Grand Prix Drivers’ Association (GPDA), it emerged in Bahrain recently that a letter critical of the management and governance of formula one was actually supported by the entire grid of active race drivers.
Villeneuve, the outspoken 1997 world champion, reacted to the letter this week by telling the drivers to “shut up”.
“I think he was being very polite,” Watson, a former McLaren driver, told the British broadcaster Sky when asked about Villeneuve’s comments.
When asked his own opinion about the GPDA letter, the 69-year-old Irishman added: “They’re stating the obvious. What Jacques has said is basically right.
“I just want drivers to do what they’re good at doing, and leave the other bits of formula one to the people who manage it very well.”
Watson said it would be legitimate for the drivers to try to campaign behind the scenes for more involvement, such as a place on the FIA’s World Council.
“But constructing a letter like that, posting it (on Twitter), sending it to Bernie … it was a joke,” he added.