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Alonso opted for Renault in `09.


Reports from Spain have suggested that Fernando Alonso turned down the chance to jump ship and join Ferrari for the coming Formula One season out of loyalty to the Renault team which rescued him from his McLaren nightmare.

Returning to Enstone was something of a salvation for the double world champion, providing a comforting bosom after the maelstrom wrought by his relationship with Ron Dennis and Lewis Hamilton in 2007 and, if the reports are true, it would appear that Alonso favoured that when offered the chance to move to Maranello for 2009.

The Spaniard has long been mentioned in the same breath as a seat at Ferrari, initially to replace Felipe Massa, and continued to be mentioned throughout 2008 as Kimi Raikkonen struggled for form and Alonso found himself battling in midfield with Renault. However, hard as it may be to imagine anyone turning down a seat at the constructors' champion, as.com claims that Alonso agreed to stay at Renault before Ferrari reconfirmed both Massa and Raikkonen through to the end of 2010.

Alonso's extended deal with Renault would bind him to Enstone until the end of 2010, but the Spanish reports do no rule out a change of colours before that, with the Singapore and Japanese GP winner possibly riding the Prancing Horse from the end of the current season. Raikkonen's motivation in 2008 hinted at a possible retirement at the end of the season, which made his two-year contract extension even more of a surprise, and the Finn could yet walk away should he struggle to adapt to the new regulations in 2009, opening a spot for Alonso to slip in alongside Massa, who appears to hold the upper hand at Maranello for the time being.

"That Fernando has always has an interest to drive for Ferrari is not a secret," the Spaniard's manager insisted earlier this week, "What can I say though? 2011 is far away. It is too soon to speak about."


Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Fernando Alonso (ESP) Renault R28, Felipe Massa (BRA) Ferrari F2008, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Ferrari F2008, Brazilian F1 Grand Prix, Interlagos, 30th October 2008-2nd, November, 2008
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, Start of the race, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB12 and Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H and Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, Marcus Ericsson (SUE) Sauber C34 and Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren Honda MP4-31
27.11.2016 - Race, Jolyon Palmer (GBR) Renault Sport F1 Team RS16 and Esteban Gutierrez (MEX) Haas F1 Team VF-16
27.11.2016 - Race, Jolyon Palmer (GBR) Renault Sport F1 Team RS16 and Jenson Button (GBR)  McLaren Honda MP4-31
27.11.2016 - Race,Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H  leads Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB12
27.11.2016 - Race, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB12 leads Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H

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Calvin _

January 03, 2009 8:32 PM

What a lot of bull. He was only "loyal" to Renault because he had nowhere else to go. By the time he made up his mind, or waited for ferrari to make theirs up, keeping everyone else waiting, there were no suitable seats available, so he "decided" to stay with Renault.

RXRacer - Unregistered

January 03, 2009 3:43 PM

I think that report is total rubbish...... he woulda ditched Renault in a millisecond if Ferrari offered him a drive for '09. And I'm not being mean to Alonso either. Chances like that are just way too good for any driver to pass up. He's a WC winning race driver, and not getting any younger. He would surely want to be in a top car for as many of his remaining years as possible. I don't buy it one bit.



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