Formula 1


McLaren target Fernando Alonso for 2014 drive

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McLaren have revealed that they are targeting current two-time World Championship Ferrari driver, Fernando Alonso, to rejoin the team next season.

Martin Whitmarsh admitted that he would love to see Fernando Alonso back in the McLaren garage and also hasn't confirmed Sergio Perez will drive for them next season.

With the speculation of Raikkonen's Ferrari move sealed, it is suspected that Fernando Alonso may be unsettled at Ferrari with the Finn driving alongside him as a serious World Championship contender.

When Martin Whitmarsh was asked if he wanted the double world champion, the McLaren boss said: "Yes, any team would. He's the best driver."

However he did add that acquiring him could be difficult.

"I don't know his contractual situation. I assume he's under contract," he added.

It has also been confirmed that Jenson Button has extended his McLaren contract for next season. However he did state that he 'can't stay' in the 2015 season when Honda return to the team as an engine partner.

Button told Sky Sports News on Thursday at the Singapore track that: "It is done, i'll be here next year."

Does this mean Sergio Perez's seat in 2014 is unclear? The young Mexican said in the driver's press conference yesterday in Singapore that: "everything is pretty much done", referring to his 2014 McLaren contract.

Yet Martin Whitmarsh still admits an interest in the Ferrari Spaniard of Fernando Alonso.

The McLaren team boss also said: "I expect our driver line up for next year to stay the same but we are open to anything and in the long-term he would be a great asset. Fernando is in charge of his own destiny, but we'll see."

Alonso is committed to Ferrari until 2016 as he is under contract, but there has been friction between the Ferrari team and the driver for many weeks.

The 32-year-old was under criticism by president Luca di Montezemolo in July after making critical remarks about Alonso's car. Yet Alonso has also had tensions with the McLaren team as he fell out with some of the crew when he was Lewis Hamilton's teammate in 2007.

Looking ahead to 2015, if Fernando Alonso was to join, the new deal with Honda to provide engines to McLaren could prove a powerful weapon in the World Championship in years to come. 

As things stand Lotus, Ferrari and McLaren are all considered to have yet more potential driver mash-ups for the upcoming 2014 season after more speculation arises over Felipe Massa, Fernando Alonso, Romain Grosjean and Sergio Perez.

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