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Alonso Happy with Renault Stay

Fernando Alonso revealed that he feels happier than ever at Renault. And the Spaniard insisted his feelings do not relate to Honda quitting the sport, a team he was very close to signing with at the end of last season. When returning to testing at Jerez this week, the Spaniard argued that going to Ross Brawn's team was never a serious option for him, considering Renault's good run in the closing stages of 2008.

“The truth is I am content to be with Renault, but not because Honda has gone away. I must say that going to Honda was never too serious an option,” said Alonso, according to Spanish sports newspaper Marca.

It was no secret to anyone that Honda were very interested in signing the two-time world champ following their disappointing campaigns in 2007 & 2008, but all rumors stopped when Alonso signed a 2-year extension to his existing deal with the French constructor. That also ended paddock talk concerning his future move to Ferrari in 2010.

Alonso also insisted that he does not think Renault will follow Honda's example and leave F1 before the beginning of 2009, despite their financial difficulties. The French manufacturer is rumored to be considering FIA's offer for a standard power train starting 2010, signaling a cut in funds towards their F1 team.

“I don't think that Renault will leave. Renault has always had a good policy in grand prix racing. It's not a team who wastes money and I think we are in a good position to fight for the championship next year. I'm not thinking about that possibility,” added the Spaniard.

Alonso concluded his first testing experience with Renault in the off-season on Thursday, at Jerez. The F1 ace recorded the best time of 1:19.319 yesterday afternoon, but admitted he has concentrated more on getting familiar with the new Bridgestone slick tires rather than score quick laps.

“It was a good day as we continued to add miles to the car and to understand the tires. We maximized the time on the track and managed to do a lot of laps as well as some basic-set-up work. I have already been doing a lot of physical work to get ready for next year and so spending a couple of days in the car this week was another important part of my preparation and has helped me get back up to speed. I'm now looking forward to testing the new car in January,” added Alonso.
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