Formula 1

Fernando Alonso to stay at Ferrari

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Fernando Alonso is happy at Ferrari (©GettyImages)
Fernando Alonso is happy at Ferrari (©GettyImages).

After a very short period of speculation, Fernando Alonso immediately downplayed rumours of a Ferrari move and has confirmed that he has a committed future to Ferrari.

The speculation arose after the McLaren team boss Martin Whitmarsh said he was interested to re-sign the 32-year-old Spaniard. 

Alonso claims he is flattered about the offer but will remain at Ferrari for the long-term future. Alonso will partner Kimi Raikkonen next year at Ferrari, which is set to be an intriguing duel between the two former World Champions.

McLaren have refused to announce their complete 2014 driver line-up after the hope that Alonso may consider leaving Ferrari for his former team.

But after an unhappy year at McLaren in 2007 for Alonso and a committed future at Ferrari, Whitmarsh's hopes of signing the two-time World Champion were dashed.

Alonso said after Friday's second practice session: "It is good to have these comments, but I have no intention (of leaving). I have three more years with Ferrari."

Alonso managed to finish seventh in the first practice session with a time of 1:48.362, and finish 6th in the second practice session with a time of 1:45.691, almost a second and a half off leader Sebastian Vettel.

The suspicion of a move from Alonso not only came from an interest from McLaren team boss Whitmarsh, but also over Alonso's disputes with the Ferrari team in recent years. 

The 2007 season shook up a lot of speculation among the relationship between the McLaren team and Alonso, and with rejecting an attempting move to the team, there has been much talk about sour relations continuing.

However Alonso has claimed that: "It is nice to have the comments from the other team principals every year saying they respect my job and my professionality - especially McLaren as there were so many rumours that we had a lot of problems that year (2007)."

"But I always say that I had no problems with anyone. It was just the philosophy of the team or rather one man in the team that is no longer there."

After two frantic practice sessions at the Marina Bay Circuit, Alonso added to his comments over his Ferrari commitment by saying, "I hope many more years to come if we can extend the contract, and that will be my hope."

Alonso reassured fans of his devotion to Ferrari by adding: "I keep repeating every weekend - and I don't know why I have to keep repeating - I love Ferrari and I will stay in Ferrari until the end."

Alonso is second in the drivers' standings, 53 points behind current leader Vettel after 12 races of the 2014 season, with seven still to go.


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