Fernando Alonso said his final race for Ferrari "was emotional" after driving for the team for the last time in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Ferrari announced on Thursday that Alonso will leave the team and be replaced by Sebastian Vettel, with Alonso set to be announced as a McLaren Honda driver over the coming weeks. Asked about his final grand prix for Ferrari, Alonso said the final time the mechanics left his car on the grid was the moment it really hit home.

"It was emotional," Alonso said. "The worst moment to be honest was on the grid, when I jumped in the car, we fired up the engine and the mechanics stayed there with the blankets for the last minute until 20 seconds to go. I saw the faces of the two guys with the front tyres and they were looking at me with eyes shining and it was tough. It was tough to pull first gear and start the formation lap."

And when it was put to Alonso that a return to McLaren was previously unthinkable, he was asked as to the chances of him returning to Ferrari one day.

"I don't know. I think it's at the moment not an option because obviously if you say bye bye it's not that you think five minutes later you will come back. But I went from Renault to McLaren, then I came back to Renault, I went to Ferrari, maybe I come back to other teams.

"So it seems that the people who work with me they keep one door open. That's normally the opposite to what I read, that I'm difficult to work with. But at the end of the day at the places I work I can come back normally so that's a good sign."