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Granny power behind Alonso return to Renault

Alonso announced his return to Renault on December 10, ending speculation over his driving plans for the 2008 season.

india Updated: Dec 19, 2007 14:19 IST

Two-time Formula One world champion Fernando Alonso has said his grandmother had put pressure on him to leave the McLaren team for Renault.

"The person who was most concerned was my grandmother, who told me to get out of there, from McLaren," he told Cadena Ser radio late on Monday.

"We opted for Renault because it is the most optimistic choice for 2008 and with possibilities to do good things," the 26-year-old Spaniard said.

But he said the French team have a lot to do next season.

"This year they (Renault) were far off and they will have to make a great leap, but anything is possible."

Alonso announced his return to Renault on December 10, ending speculation over his driving plans for the 2008 season.

He won his two titles in 2005 and 2006 with the French team before moving to McLaren with whom he finished third in this year's title race behind Kimi Raikkonen and teammate Lewis Hamilton.

Alonso ended his contract early with McLaren after a turbulent time with a spying scandal and a fractious relationship with Hamilton and team boss Ron Dennis.

But he told Cadena Ser he had no concerns over the same type of tensions with new teammate Nelsinho Piquet at Renault.

"In the end, it all depends on me and it doesn't matter whether my teammate is more or less famous than me. I have confidence in Renault, in (team boss) Flavio (Briatore) and I know that he will manage the team well."