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F1 NEWS 

Kovalainen not surprised by Renault exit

Heikki Kovalainen has said he was not surprised about Renault's decision to drop him for 2008, after revealing he is mulling over two other options to remain in Formula One next year.

The Finn impressed in his debut season with Renault, claiming his maiden podium finish in the wet Japanese Grand Prix at Fuji and outscoring more experienced teammate Giancarlo Fisichella.

But it is understood that his speed ultimately cost him the chance of staying on board at Renault, because the returning Fernando Alonso did not want a teammate to pose the kind of challenge that he faced with Lewis Hamilton at McLaren this year.

That decision has left Kovalainen hunting for a drive elsewhere. But although most teams have already decided on their line-ups, he remains strongly linked with possibilities at McLaren, to replace Alonso, and also Toyota - where he could be granted a seat at the expense of Jarno Trulli.

Speaking to Finnish television channel MTV3, Kovalainen had said he was still weighing up the offers on the table.

"This was something we could expect," he said about Renault's choice of Alonso and Nelson Piquet Jr. "For some time we have been going through other options.

"Renault made this kind of a decision, but luckily there are two other options with interesting offers."

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