Fernando Alonso could be on his way to Ferrari in 2008, after the Scuderia entered the frame to sign the double world champion, who is out of favour at McLaren-Mercedes.

Alonso has been unhappy this year at Ron Dennis' team as he hasn't been given outright number one status - and instead has had to battle it out with his rookie team-mate and current championship leader, Lewis Hamilton.

Relations at the Woking-based outfit have also sunk to a new low in recent weeks, following his argument with Dennis at the Hungarian Grand Prix and the subsequent impact this has had with regard to the spy row. Neither has spoken, or so the rumours go, since the heated 'discussions' at Budapest.

All this has led to strong talk he could be about to re-join Renault, something that has been speculated about for a while - even though he has a contract with McLaren - and on Saturday, Alonso's manager, trainer and other close associates were seen in discussions with Renault F1 team management and with Flavio Briatore himself, something that nobody made any attempt to hide.

The latest twist though is that Ferrari has joined the race for the Spaniard, at least according to paddock sources.

The theory goes that Felipe Massa will be dumped to make way for Alonso, something that would give the Scuderia a formidable line-up - although with Kimi Raikkonen in the other seat Fernando won't get outright #1 status, something that may give Renault the edge, in terms of getting Alonso to sign on the dotted line.

If Alonso does manage to get out of his McLaren deal, he may have to pay for the privilege, something that will go some way to helping the Surrey-based squad pay off their record $100 million fine.

In a separate development meanwhile both Jean Todt and Ron Dennis could be on there way out.

F1 insiders add that Todt is no longer as popular as he once was and may be replaced by former technical director, Ross Brawn, while Mercedes allegedly want Ron out after all the spy shenanigans, something that has left the German manufacturer less than pleased.

How much is rumour and fact remains to be seen.

More to follow as and when it develops...

 

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