François so often comes into my mind, you wouldn't believe it - Jackie Stewart.
François Cevert holds his one month old nephew Anthony as his then girlfriend Countess Christina de Caraman, sister Jacqueline, and brother in law Jean-Pierre Beltoise look on.
Early in his four-wheeled career, Beltoise met and later married one Jacqueline Cevert. Maybe his glamorous, dangerous career as a racing driver attracted her - it certainly attracted the attention of her brother François.
Beltoise would provide support and guidance to his brother-in-law, and eventually they would contest four seasons together, including both serving stints as team-mates to Jackie Stewart. Jacqueline would often be seen in tow with the pair of them.
Ironically, Cevert pipped Beltoise to the honour of being the second Frenchman to win a Grand Prix. Both would end their Formula One careers with a single win to their name, but at least Beltoise would walk away from his.
Jacqueline Beltoise can remember EVERY moment of the day her older brother was killed at Watkins Glen in 1973 — at just 29 years of age.
And she admits she first thought it was the racing pin-up’s F1 mentor, three-time world champ Sir Jackie Stewart, who had died.
Jacqueline contacted The Scottish Sun after we told last month how Hollywood producers are set to shoot a movie about Cevert’s close relationship with Sir Jackie and his wife Helen.
The Stewarts are working with Brokeback Mountain mogul Bill Pohlad to bring the story of their friendship with Francois to the big screen.
Blonde Jacqueline, her Formula One driver husband Jean-Pierre Beltoise and brother Francois were inseparable at the Grand Prix.
But on the fateful day in October 1973, pregnant Jacqueline had stayed away from the New York track.
And she believes she could have changed the course of history had she made the trip.
She wept as she recalled: “I was not at Watkins Glen. I was pregnant with my son, Julien. It was early in my pregnancy and I was sick.
“Jean-Pierre and Francois had begged me to come. They said we would go to the Bahamas between the two races, but I could not. The slightest smell of fuel made me sick.
If I had been at Watkins Glen I would have cared for him during practice. I was always with my brother, to give him a drink or talking to him. I was very close to him.
It would have made him lose time unintentionally. This may have changed things… and it would not have happened, I am almost sure. When a driver is alone, he does not waste time.
I was back in Neuilly and they called me from Watkins Glen. Jean-Pierre also thought it was Jackie when he saw it was a Tyrrell car. Then he saw it was Francois. He was walking towards the car and Jody Scheckter saw Jean-Pierre and stopped him. He said, ‘Don’t go there, it’s horrible’.
I still can’t talk about it. I can’t forget about that horrible day.”
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