Fernando Alonso used cash at McLaren to try and gain edge over Lewis Hamilton

Former McLaren mechanic Marc Priestly has revealed how Fernando Alonso used money in envelopes to try and win members of the team around in his battle with Lewis Hamilton.

Alonso and Hamilton were team-mates for just the one year back in 2007 but they certainly managed to pack that sole season with drama, as they ended up missing out on the Drivers’ title by the narrowest of margins with Kimi Raikkonen stealing in.

Indeed, it was a rivalry based on both men battling for supremacy within the team, with Fernando arriving as a reigning double world champion and Lewis turning up as one of the most exciting talents around.

Both felt as though the team should have been built around them and there was a number of flashpoints through the season, with the rivalry still strong, though not as intense, today.

Indeed, in the battle to get the edge over his team-mate, Priestly has revealed the lengths Fernando went to to try and get his mechanics working double hard.

Fernando Alonso brings out the bribes at McLaren

“One of Fernando’s tactics is to try and bring the whole team over to his side of the garage,” Priestly said to the Pitstop podcast.

“He tries to wrestle control. There was a moment during 2007 when we had them both where Fernando turned up at a race and I arrived and Fernando’s manager or his trainer is handing out little brown envelopes stuffed with cash to everybody who wasn’t on Lewis’ car.

VIDEO: Marc Priestley explains Fernando Alonso’s incredible tactics to win support at McLaren ahead of Lewis Hamilton

“So his team, the support team, I was running the t-car team, we all got these little brown envelopes and I remember opening up the envelope and there was like €1,500 or something.

“It was so dodgy, first of all you just get an unmarked brown envelope and I’m like ‘thanks very much what’s that’ and the trainer wanders off and you’re left with this thing and you open it up and it’s literally just full of cash.

“You start looking around and your colleagues have all got them going ‘have you opened yours? How much did you get?’ And all of a sudden this starts spreading around the team and the only people that didn’t get them were Lewis’ crew.

“All of a sudden it starts to dawn on us what’s happened here, he’s looking to gain support, he’s trying to encourage, let’s say, people to support his side of this intense battle that they were in.”

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