Briatore: Alonso has better future at McLaren

Date published: May 27 2015 - Editor

Flavio Briatore has once again defended Fernando Alonso's move from Ferrari to McLaren, saying "it was a good change".

After five frustrating seasons with Ferrari, two-time World Champion Alonso decided to return to McLaren after the 2014 campaign but things haven't really gone according to plan.

While the Woking-based squad have struggled at the wrong end of the grid in the opening few races, Ferrari have excelled with Alonso's replacement Sebastian Vettel winning in Malaysia and appearing on the podium another four times.

Former Renault F1 team principal Briatore, who is also Alonso's manager, insists it was a good decision to leave the Scuderia.

"I believe at one point in Ferrari it was over, from both sides. I believe it was a good change," he told Reuters. "McLaren is a serious team. Honda we know is a great company and we are there.

"I don't think the situation of (Australian Daniel) Ricciardo (at Red Bull) is better than that of Fernando. In Formula One at the moment you have one team and it's Mercedes. Whatever other team you are second, and second is the first of the losers."

He added: "He is happy to be staying at McLaren now.

"I don't understand why you guys think it's a lot of pressure. Drivers like this are very lucky people. Maybe you have pressure to pay the rent at the end of the month but these people have no pressure at all."

Although Ferrari have improved since Alonso left, Briatore insists they are no closer to catching Mercedes.

"(In qualifying) Vettel was seven tenths from Lewis (Hamilton) and last year Fernando was fifth (on the grid for Ferrari) and seven tenths (off pole)," he said, speaking at during the race weekend at the principality.

"Between Ferrari and Mercedes it is the same distance. The problem is three or four teams are not there any more. With Honda and McLaren, we have a better future."