Fernando Alonso admits that he wouldn't be upset to see some Mercedes-style friction in the McLaren camp next season, as it would likely mean that the Woking team has emerged from its 2015 nightmare.
Speaking to Sky Sports News
from a sponsor event to highlight the perils of drink-driving, Alonso again confirmed that he had no intention of taking next year off, and was clearly looking forward to locking horns with team-mate Jenson Button in more competitive climes. While the Briton might not be the most combative opponent off-track, the Spaniard insisted that he would not baulk at a little tension between the pair if it meant that McLaren and Honda were competing at the front of the field.
"There is always more stress when you are fighting for championships and wins within your team, as we have seen with some other teams who are having issues," Alonso said, reacting to recent stories suggesting that Mercedes might dissolve the fractious pairing of Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg should relations in the camp not improve.
"But let's say it's a good stress to have when you are fighting for big things. I'm looking forward to working with Jenson next year and, if there is a bit of tension, then it would be welcome as well!"
While Honda's return to the top flight made McLaren something of a laughing stock as it accumulated grid penalties brought on by the repeated change of engine parts, both Alonso - who endured his own edgy relationship with Hamilton in 2007 - and Button remain optimistic that the worst is now behind them, as the former Anglo-Japanese powerhouse pairing works to improve its performance in time for the start of 2016.
"I am very positive about next year,” the double world champion reiterated, “We've been through very difficult times, but we understand our problems and the solutions - at least on the theoretical side. Next year will definitely be a much better year and our intention is to fight for the championship or, minimum, fight for podiums. There is a huge potential we need to unlock.
"We understand the challenge in front of us and we've had to use all of our experience and knowledge to help the team grow up and improve the situation as quickly as possible. That's what we are doing and now that things are getting better it would make no sense to miss the opportunity to finally enjoy being competitive next year."