Briatore predicts tough year for McLaren and Ferrari

Renault boss Flavio Briatore believes Formula One rivals McLaren will continue to struggle in 2007 despite signing world champion Fernando Alonso. "It will be a tough year for them," he said, after McLaren failed to win a Grand Prix last season.

"They've always had fantastic drivers like (Kimi) Raikkonen.

"They always announce them early to demonstrate they're changing, but this year the book of excuses has come to its last page."

Briatore also suggested Ferrari will struggle after losing seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher and technical director Ross Brawn.

"Ferrari without Schumacher and Brawn will be less competitive," added Briatore.

"That's normal when you lose people like those." BBC Sport

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