Fernando Alonso wants to end McLaren talk by signing contract extension with Ferrari

The Spaniard had been linked with a return to his former team but he insists he wants to stay with the Italian manufacturer

Fernando Alonso is ready to sign a further contract extension with Ferrari that could see him bring the curtain down on his Formula One career with the Maranello marque.

For the past few weeks, and notably over the course of this weekend in the build-up to the Singapore Grand Prix, Alonso's future has been the subject of feverish speculation.

Alonso was initially linked with the vacancy at Red Bull in light of Mark Webber's decision to quit F1 at the end of the season, only for those rumours to be denied.

On Friday, McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh then made it clear he would gladly welcome back Alonso if he were available, despite his acrimonious departure in 2007 in the wake of the 'spygate' scandal.

Alonso quickly rejected those overtures, instead declaring his love for Ferrari and his desire to see out a contract that expires at the end of 2016 when he will be 35.

Now Alonso is eager to start talks with the team with regard to putting pen to paper on another lucrative deal.

"I've spent the last four races saying I want to stay at Ferrari and maybe extend the contract when they would like," said Alonso.

"We are working very closely on arriving at that situation because I hope to end my career in Formula One with Ferrari.

"To sit together and to try to do it, that's my desire, and the team has expressed to me more or less the same desire when we talk about this. That will be a good thing to achieve.

"There have been people racing until 38, 39, with no problems. Mark (Webber) is one of the examples, he has been very competitive, and Michael (Schumacher) also came back at a good age.

"So 35 is still a good age, so if I keep the motivation and enjoying the sport, like I'm doing now, when the time arrives we will see."

Grand prix Saturdays, however, are proving far from enjoyable for the 32-year-old as Alonso will start seventh for Sunday's race at the Marina Bay Street Circuit.

The Spaniard finished a second behind world title rival Sebastian Vettel as the three-times world champion again dominated qualifying, claiming the 41st pole of his career.

Even with new parts on his car, Alonso said: "They gave us the time gains we expected, but our opponents are not watching tv during grands prix. They are also improving.

"It's sad news for us, obviously, but there is nothing we can do now apart from prepare for a perfect race.

"Everything has not been going in the right direction for us, but I have 189 points and I'm second in the world championship, so that's our strong point."

PA

Arts and Entertainment
Lou Reed distorted the truth about his upbringing, and since his death in 2013, biographers and memoirists have added to the myths
musicThe truth about Lou Reed's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths
News
people
News
Ed Miliband received a warm welcome in Chester
election 2015
Life and Style
Apple CEO Tim Cook announces the Apple Watch during an Apple special even
fashionIs the Apple Watch for you? Well, it depends if you want it for the fitness tech, or for the style
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders
Heston Blumenthal to cook up a spice odyssey for British astronaut manning the International Space Station

UK's Major Tum to blast off on a spice odyssey

Nothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
John Harrison's 'longitude' clock sets new record - 300 years on

‘Longitude’ clock sets new record - 300 years on

Greenwich horologists celebrate as it keeps to within a second of real time over a 100-day test
Fears in the US of being outgunned in the vital propaganda wars by Russia, China - and even Isis - have prompted a rethink on overseas broadcasters

Let the propaganda wars begin - again

'Accurate, objective, comprehensive': that was Voice of America's creed, but now its masters want it to promote US policy, reports Rupert Cornwell
Why Japan's incredible long-distance runners will never win the London Marathon

Japan's incredible long-distance runners

Every year, Japanese long-distance runners post some of the world's fastest times – yet, come next weekend, not a single elite competitor from the country will be at the London Marathon
Why does Tom Drury remain the greatest writer you've never heard of?

Tom Drury: The quiet American

His debut was considered one of the finest novels of the past 50 years, and he is every bit the equal of his contemporaries, Jonathan Franzen, Dave Eggers and David Foster Wallace
You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

Dave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
Beige is back: The drab car colours of the 1970s are proving popular again

Beige to the future

Flares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's dishes highlight the delicate essence of fresh cheeses

Bill Granger cooks with fresh cheeses

More delicate on the palate, milder, fresh cheeses can also be kinder to the waistline
Aston Villa vs Liverpool: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful,' says veteran Shay Given

Shay Given: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful'

The Villa keeper has been overlooked for a long time and has unhappy memories of the national stadium – but he is savouring his chance to play at Wembley
Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own - Michael Calvin

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own