McLaren boss Eric Boullier has refuted the claim that Fernando Alonso is a difficult driver to manage and is completely focused on being competitive.
Relationships between Alonso and his former teams McLaren-Mercedes and Ferrari have both turned sour and neither Mercedes nor Ferrari have been interested in signing the two-time World Champion at the end of the season when his current contract expires.
But Boullier has insisted that having Alonso in the team does not necessarily spell trouble.
“What makes Fernando stand out compared to the others is the vital need he has to be competitive,” Bouiller told F1i.com.
“All he cares about is winning, winning, winning, in everything he tries his hand at.
“You may be racing him at your local go-kart track or play tennis against him, he will give 200% to come out on top. He will be just as committed as for a Grand Prix weekend.
“Fernando’s entire life is centred around that need to perform and win. I would not say he is a monk but he is only interested in competing.”
And it is Alonso’s dedication that Boullier believes has led to a “misunderstanding” about the Spaniard.
He added: “This is a great quality but it might have led to some misunderstanding about what his expectations are. Fernando has had a reputation for being quite a handful to manage when really he is not.
“Once you’ve understood his hunger for performance, it’s quite easy to deal with this character trait.
“Of course, you can imagine that he is quite chagrined in light of our recent results. Fernando might have his character, expectations, and conditions but he is not like the guy he is sometimes portrayed.”