Apr.4 (GMM) Fernando Alonso says he left McLaren at the end of 2007 because he knew his winning days for the team were over.
The former double world champion has returned to Renault this season, where due to the R28's lack of performance he has already ruled out making a tilt for the title.
But after the tumultuous 2007 season, where amid the spy scandal he was regarded by some team members as a traitor, Alonso on Thursday said his chances had he stayed at McLaren would not have been calculably better.
"The (2008 McLaren) car is a winner, but I knew that I was not going to win because of what happened at the end of the year," he told the Spanish newspaper Diario AS in Bahrain, thus breaking his silence about the breakdown of the McLaren relationship.
Alonso, 26, reveals that he did not feel supported at the Mercedes-powered team, where he was paired with the rookie sensation Lewis Hamilton.
Referring to his return to uncompetitive Renault, he said: "I prefer to be in eighth place with a thousand people who want me to finish seventh, rather than in third place and the other way round."
Alonso insists that leaving McLaren was the right thing to do."When you know that somewhere is not the best place for you, if you do not feel comfortable and that it is not right for you as a person, it's best to go somewhere else, isn't it?
"Throughout the season I had the feeling that I was going to lose the championship because of strange and difficult things to understand. I knew that, sooner or later, it would be time to leave, because I did not share the philosophy of the team."
He says he does not feel responsible for McLaren's failure to win the titles last year.
"No, I think there is only one culprit," Alonso coyly answered. "Sometimes, in sport and in life, people turn out to be different to how you thought they were going to be, and you end up being disappointed.
"I think this summarises last year for me."He said he felt betrayed in 2007, "but not by anyone in particular, just in general."
Alonso, however, insists that even the disastrous McLaren chapter, and an uncompetitive 2008 season, are not going to convince him to retire from the sport.
"Right now, in 2008, I can not see an end," he said. "I know that I want to keep going for many years."