Briatore told Alonso: You will fight with 'protected' Hamilton at McLaren

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Former Formula 1 team boss Flavio Briatore says he warned Fernando Alonso of turmoil with Lewis Hamilton at McLaren.

Fresh from winning back-to-back world titles under the Italian's leadership at Renault in '05 and '06, the Spaniard made a big move to the Woking-based squad in 2007.

However, his stay would only last a single season after tensions with McLaren boss Ron Dennis grew to an unattainable level as both Alonso and Hamilton shared equal status.

"He went to McLaren and I was not happy because this was not Schumi [Michael Schumacher] going to Ferrari. This was Fernando going to McLaren, and for Fernando, McLaren was never in [his] dream," Briatore said in the Beyond the Grid F1 podcast.

"Especially I tell him: you have the new guy, and the new guy was Lewis Hamilton, and the new guy is in the pocket of Ron Dennis, like you with me! And I promise you, you [will] have the fighting and the guy is protected by Ron Dennis."

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Alonso though played down his boss' concerns.

"'No, no, no. I am quicker'," Briatore said was Fernando's response. "But the point is nobody, including Ron Dennis, understood how quick Lewis Hamilton was.

"Because if Ron Dennis understood how quick was Hamilton, he [would] not spend the amount of money he paid for Fernando. If I know in my house I have a driver so quick, why I do need another one? And it was a big fight."

Indeed, Flavio admits he saw very early in 2007, a sign which he knew signalled what was to come between Alonso and McLaren.

"Ron Dennis did everything by himself, you don't need to help him," he said. "I was just watching and he did everything.

"I just watched. I know what happened. After two races when you saw the change of tyres was done first for Hamilton and second by Alonso it was enough because I knew Fernando..."