JUNE 1, 2015
Briatore says Alonso under no pressure
Flavio Briatore has scoffed at claims Fernando Alonso is feeling the "pressure" of his move to McLaren-Honda.
Undoubtedly, the trajectory of the Spaniard's F1 career has been mixed at best since he dominated with Renault a decade ago.
He got caught up in the 'spy' and 'crash'-gate scandals at McLaren and Renault, tried and failed for five years to win a title in red, and has now returned to McLaren where the new works Honda era is struggling to get up to speed.
And the latest blow for Alonso, 33, is that Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel have emerged ahead of him in a new team bosses survey about the best driver in F1 today.
"Alonso has fallen in value," said Toro Rosso chief Franz Tost, explaining his top vote for Vettel in the Auto Bild survey.
But Briatore, who still oversees Alonso's management, slammed suggestions Alonso might be feeling the "pressure".
"Fernando is happy now in McLaren," the Italian told the Spanish sports daily AS.
"And this issue of pressure -- I don't understand it," Briatore insisted.
"The press believes he has a lot of pressure, but the drivers are the lucky ones," he said.
"Perhaps you (reporters) have the pressure of having to pay the bills at the end of the month, but they (F1 drivers) do not have any pressure at all.
"Alonso has no pressure," Briatore reiterated.