Alonso - No problem with Lewis

Double world champion "disappointed" with McLaren personnel

Fernando Alonso has insisted that he "never had any problem" with former McLaren-Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton.

Alonso split with McLaren at the end of the 2007, just one year into a three-year contract following a turbulent season that often saw the Spaniard at loggerheads with team boss Ron Dennis.

The performance of Hamilton in his debut season also ruffled the feathers of Alonso, who felt that his status as a double world champion afforded him preferential treatment within the team over the young Englishman.

But while Alonso has admitted he was left "disappointed" by certain McLaren personnel, he concedes that Hamilton was not one of them.

"Not everyone disappointed me," Alonso told El Pais newspaper. "Each one is how he is.

"I think that among the 1000 people that there are in McLaren, there are very great workers and engineers.

"But it is certain that, yes, there are people who disappointed me and who I couldn't work with.

"Hamilton wasn't one of them, he was on the margins of all that.

"People always talked about him and created this animosity, but I never had any problem with him."

Pit lane clash

Alonso, now back at Renault, also absolved Hamilton of any blame over their infamous pit lane clash at last year's Hungarian Grand Prix.

On that occasion, Hamilton appeared to be impeded by Alonso in the pit lane during qualifying, meaning he was unable to complete a final 'flying' lap at the Hungaroring.

Hamilton's role in the incident was also called in to question, with McLaren admitting that he should have allowed Alonso ahead of him on the track during the earlier fuel-burn phase of the third qualifying session.

However, the Spaniard - who received a grid penalty for his part in the controversy - said he laid the blame for the incident squarely at the feet of the team's management.

"If you are talking about Hungary, about the pit stop, well it wasn't his [Hamilton's] fault," Alonso continued.

"It was the team who should have taken measures and if I should have left first and given another lap to burn more fuel they should have ensured that it happened like that.

"Nevertheless, they didn't seem very interested in all that.

"It seemed that they weren't interested in me staying there.

"McLaren was a good car that gave me a chance of winning, but I knew that I could never do so in that team."


After a disappointing start to the 2008 season which has left Alonso way down in ninth place in the drivers' championship, he also said he would only stay at Renault as long as they have a "winning" car.

"My first option is to stay at Renault if we succeed in creating a winning car, and the truth is we are making progress," he said.

"But what I want is to race in a car that can give me victories. There are several, Williams, Toyota, BMW and Ferrari that are always on top no matter what happens."

Renault are attempting to combat their early-season lack of pace by introducing a range of aerodynamic and suspension updates to their R28 car in time for Sunday's Spanish Grand Prix.

"I hope that our work will pay off and that our car will allow us to move up the classification," Alonso added in a team preview.

"It will not be easy. Qualifying will again be essential. We must get a good grid place and then try to pick up as many points as possible."