Flavio Briatore has backed Fernando Alonso as 'one of the few great' F1 drivers in history and said he hopes that Spaniard can one day beat Michael Schumacher's record of seven championship titles.
The 30-year-old has two titles to his name from his time with Renault, where Briatore was team principal before being forced to leave his role for his part in the race-fixing scandal that surrounded the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix.
Briatore retains an involvement in the management of Alonso and he said the Ferrari man had shown himself to be one of the best drivers ever to appear in the sport.
"Fernando deserves to be the best driver in history,” he told Onda Cero
. “He has decided to be with Ferrari until the end of his career and I hope he can get the cars to win more titles than Schumacher.
"If he had the current Red Bull, Fernando would be winning by a huge margin. He is one of the few great drivers with Senna, Prost and Schumacher.”
Briatore added that he felt Alonso was a better driver than Schumacher, despite the German having five more titles to his name.
"They are two totally different drivers,” he said. “Fernando is a little better, because when Michael becomes depressed, he falls back, while in the same situation Fernando's concentration sharpens."