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Last Updated: Wednesday, 21 November 2007, 13:45 GMT
Alonso bides his time over future
By Andrew Benson

Fernando Alonso
Alonso had an unhappy season with McLaren in 2007
Double world champion Fernando Alonso is in no hurry to decide where he will drive next year, his manager says.

Renault team boss Flavio Briatore said on Monday he expected a decision from the Spaniard within two days.

Alonso's manager Luis Garcia Abad told BBC Sport: "He will decide when he knows the best option for his future."

He would not specify when Alonso would make a decision, but he denied he was waiting for the outcome of Renault's hearing on spying charges next month.

Renault have been summoned before Formula One's governing body to answer a charge of possessing confidential McLaren technical information.

McLaren, for whom Alonso had a tempestuous season in 2007, were excluded from this year's constructors' championship and fined $100m (£48.6m) after being found guilty on a similar charge in September.

606: DEBATE

"Fernando is on holiday and we have nothing to say at the moment," Garcia Abad added.

Briatore had told Italian radio on Monday there was a "60% chance" of Alonso returning next season to the team where he won the world title in 2005 and 2006.

But on Wednesday he told the Spanish newspaper Marca: "I have no news on Fernando, just rumours. Everything is hearsay."

The 2008 F1 season starts on 14 March with the Australian Grand Prix.

It is widely believed that Brazilian Nelson Piquet Jr, who was Renault's test driver last season, will step up into one of the team's race seats.

The other will be filled by Finn Heikki Kovalainen unless Alonso re-joins the team with which he won the world title in 2005 and 2006.

Italian veteran Giancarlo Fisichella is not expected to be offered another season with Renault.

Fernando Alonso (left) with former boss and Renault team manager Flavio Briatore
Alonso (left) and Briatore enjoyed success together at Renault
If Alonso does return to Renault, Kovalainen is the favourite to fill his former seat at McLaren alongside Lewis Hamilton.

Alonso has also been linked with Red Bull, Toyota and BMW Sauber.

But Red Bull team boss Christian Horner has appeared to rule Alonso out of his plans, saying that Mark Webber and David Coulthard are under contract and that the 26-year-old "will go to Renault".

Toyota are unlikely to be considered by Alonso to be capable of giving him a sufficiently competitive car.

And BMW Sauber also have two drivers under contract for 2008 - Nick Heidfeld and Robert Kubica.

Alonso joined McLaren last summer but had a troubled year with the British team, largely down to tensions between himself and team boss Ron Dennis based on his belief that the team were not giving him the treatment he deserved as a double champion.

He spent the season in an unresolved battle for supremacy with team-mate Lewis Hamilton, with the two men finishing tied on points one behind world champion Kimi Raikkonen of Ferrari after winning four races each.

Alonso did not expect to find Hamilton so tough a challenge and accused team boss Ron Dennis of favouring his protégé.



SEE ALSO
Renault deny McLaren data charge
09 Nov 07 |  Formula One
Renault face McLaren spy charge
08 Nov 07 |  Formula One
Alonso tipped for Renault return
15 Nov 07 |  Formula One
Comment: Alonso exit inevitable
02 Nov 07 |  Formula One
Alonso and McLaren agree to split
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Heikki Kovalainen column
01 Nov 07 |  Formula One
Decision on Alonso soon - Dennis
23 Oct 07 |  Formula One
Alonso criticises McLaren tactics
22 Oct 07 |  Formula One
F1's new star - and it's not the champ
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Formula One hits new heights
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Raikkonen pips Hamilton to title
21 Oct 07 |  Formula One
Alonso will leave McLaren - Head
21 Oct 07 |  Formula One
Alonso wants split from Hamilton
01 Oct 07 |  Formula One
Hamilton wants Alonso out of team
30 Sep 07 |  Formula One
How Hamilton drove Alonso to the edge
16 Sep 07 |  Formula One


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