Double F1 World Champion Fernando Alonso has contended that 2009 has been the worst season in years for the sport and 'maybe the worst in history' - as he expressed his exasperation with the ongoing FIA/FOTA dispute and expensive regulation blunders.

Though it is expected that a new commercial rights-governing Concorde Agreement will be signed next week between the FIA and the Formula One Teams' Association - finally putting to bed months of political unrest, squabbling and damaging in-fighting at the highest level that at one stage threatened to tear the top flight quite literally in two - Alonso is adamant that the dispute has gone on for far too long, and could and more importantly should have been adequately dealt with much earlier.

The Spaniard is also outspoken regarding what he believes has been a catalogue of errors on the part of the governing body in terms of F1's rules, classifying the introduction of the costly and ultimately abortive energy-saving KERS (Kinetic Energy Recovery Systems) technology as 'the big mistake of the year', criticising the ambiguity over the infamous 'double-diffuser' loophole and belittling the benefits of the newly-adjustable front wing, designed to generate greater overtaking opportunities. Ever one to shoot from the hip, Alonso's words will not make pleasant reading for the powers that-be.

"This is the worst Formula 1 we have had in many years, maybe the worst in history, because of the politics and all of the fights," the 21-time grand prix-winner bluntly told British newspaper The Independent. "We need to find a solution as soon as possible. These six months, they have been very bad for Formula 1.

"The people at home, they don't understand why Ferrari isn't winning, they don't understand about diffusers and KERS - they care about the show - and every week we have two or three press releases, from the FIA, from FOTA. This is not our dream of Formula 1!

"I like the slick tyre; it's actually quite similar to what we used to have, quite driveable, but it is more of a racing tyre. The other one, with grooves, was not the right one! The rest of the regulations, I don't think they are great. KERS is the big mistake of the year. We introduced KERS at the wrong moment, with the economic situation that we have now. The teams have spent a lot of money for nothing. And the aerodynamics...the cars don't look too good.

"I never touch [the adjustable front wing]! So far, in nine races, I have never used it - it's not useful at all. KERS, the aerodynamics - they are two new regulations that didn't work this year. For sure [the diffusers] have helped a lot Toyota, Williams and Brawn, but now we all have them, so [there are] no excuses. We designed the car last year with one type of regulations, and some other teams designed their cars with a different set of regulations, the double-diffusers. There are two different ways to interpret the rules, and we were on the wrong side..."

As to the political situation, Alonso is even more forthright. One of the first drivers to align himself publicly with FOTA and against the FIA, the 27-year-old made clear from the outset that if F1 did split, he would be joining the manufacturer-spearheaded breakaway series. He maintains his stance that in constantly chopping and changing, Max Mosley and his organisation are running a very serious risk of 'destroying 60 years of history of Formula 1'.

"Still in July and we don't have a solution!" he lamented. "This is not right, because we want the best possible Formula 1 - continuity in the rules, a good show for the people... All these political fights, they are damaging the sport because the fans are not very keen on them.

"My opinion is that the teams, FOTA, they are doing the maximum, they are doing all they can to find a solution; they are making a great effort to reduce costs, but also they want to race in the best category in the world with the most technology and the best teams in the world. There are more-or-less 1,000 people for each team, so we are talking about 8,000 employees between the eight [FOTA] teams - and they need to save these people as well.

"Now it is time for the FIA to step back. The drivers, we are with FOTA at the moment, because they are our teams, they pay us, they support us - and we will support them, because Formula 1 without the big companies is not Formula 1. We all need to step back, with the economic situation we have now and the [civil] war, and there are some lessons we need to learn. Hopefully next year we have a better Formula 1, a better show and full grandstands, maybe cheaper tickets.

"The FIA cannot [make] the rules as they want, every day changing. We need consistency. You have to reduce the costs, but step-by-step and not forgetting that this is Formula 1, this is new technology, this is the highest in motorsport. You cannot destroy 60 years of history of Formula 1."

Looking to the future, meanwhile, Alonso remained coy about which team he will be competing for in 2010, with the common paddock consensus that he will be clad in scarlet overalls as a Ferrari driver, most likely in place of the underperforming and seemingly demotivated Kimi Raikkonen, as part of a deal whose origins stretch back to last year.

Phlegmatic about his current predicament at Renault - with the R29, much like its unloved R28 predecessor, falling some way short of pre-season expectations - the Oviedo native admitted that if it came to a choice between a team where he feels loved and supported or one in which he feels less comfortable but which gives him a better possibility of fighting for glory, he would invariably go for the latter option...even if his experience with Ron Dennis and Lewis Hamilton at McLaren-Mercedes in 2007 undeniably left him badly burned.

"I was fighting for the championship, but the situation was impossible," he reflected of his unhappy sojourn at Woking two years ago. "We (he and Dennis) had completely opposite philosophies of the sport of motor racing, so I prefer to be in this position now, to really grow up.

"[Renault's present state of competitiveness] is frustrating, for sure, because we started the season with high hopes, thinking only to fight for the championship and to win races and be on the podium. After four or five races we realised that we were not quick enough, so we are frustrated - but once you know the situation it's time to keep working, not to be down, to be productive with the team and try to be quick as soon as possible. It is disappointing to not be able to fight like that, but it is the way it is. It is the same for Ferrari, for McLaren, for BMW. The top teams from last year, they are struggling a little bit.

"At the moment I am happy at Renault, and we will see what happens in the future. We all know the history of Ferrari, but at the moment the only concern is having a great Formula 1 for the future, better than this year, [with] continuity in the rules [and] all the big manufacturers there. When we have that, the dream is to win world championships. I won two, I'm 27-years-old, so I want to win more. I am still young, so I am sure I will have more possibilities to win - and I will be ready to take those opportunities."


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