Recently issued Villeneuve OFDC recalled because of birthplace error

Only days after their initial release, all of the recently issued Gilles Villeneuve official first-day covers (OFDCs) were recalled by Canada Post because Villeneuve’s birthplace—found on the reverse of the OFDC—was incorrectly identified.

Instead of Villeneuve’s actual birthplace of Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Qué., his birthplace is erroneously listed as Berthierville, Qué., which is about 120 kilometres north of Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu.

“We regret the error,” said Phil Legault, Canada Post media relations, adding a “new version is available now online to pre-order with delivery and in post offices by mid-June.”

A total of 11,000 Villeneuve OFDCs were originally printed and issued on May 15.

While his ‘hometown’ is incorrectly listed as Berthierville, Villeneuve was actually born in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Que.


The entire five-stamp Formula One (F1) set was unveiled and issued on May 15 during a ceremony at 1700 La Poste on 1700 rue Notre-Dame Ouest in Montréal. The set, which also included five OFDCs, celebrates 50 years of the F1 Grand Prix du Canada. Five previous winners (one from each decade) were included in the set: Villeneuve, of Canada; Jackie Stewart, of Scotland; Ayrton Senna, of Brazil; Michael Schumacher, of Germany; and Lewis Hamilton, of England.

About 150 guests watched Joann Villeneuve, Gilles Villeneuve’s wife, unveil a stamp of her late husband before Stewart unveiled his own stamp.

The OFDC (obverse shown) was originally issued on May 15 as part of Canada Post’s five-stamp F1 set.

It’s unknown when or how the error was discovered, or how many of the OFDCs were sold before the recall, which began during the second last week of May.

Each of the OFDCs, which measure 190 mm x 112 mm, were cancelled in Montréal. They were available as a set of five, which were also recalled—along with the limited-edition framed enlargement featuring Villeneuve—because of the birthplace error.

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