McGinley is Ryder Cup skipper in waiting
With one anecdote Britain's brightest golfing prospect justified the retention of the biennial clash between GB and Ireland and Continental Europe on the European Tour calendar.
After becoming his team's talismanic leader in the Vivendi Trophy with Severiano Ballesteros (formerly Seve Trophy), Rory McIlroy devoured the infamous words of indifference he'd expressed about team golf last May.
The 20-year-old did so while praising his captain Paul McGinley - the real star of the four sun-blessed days at Saint-Nom-La-Breteche. "Every team meeting was at half-seven this week and I actually looked forward to being in those team meetings," McIlroy said.
"I was usually turning up at quarter-past seven because there was such a buzz about them. You had all the lads in there with their ideas and Paul has a load of great ideas, especially with the team format, the foursomes and the four-balls."
All smiles at the Vivendi trophy
McIlroy had realised before a ball had been struck in anger this week that he had been wrong to regard events like the Ryder Cup as a mere exhibition. Just preparing in the team environment had been enough and with each competitive round he found out just how wrong.
And much of the credit for that must go to McGinley who has established himself as a Ryder Cup skipper in waiting with his deft man-management, tactical skill and impeccable public relations.
The Irishman clearly knew how to get the best from his men and recognised that in the absence of big guns like Lee Westwood, Padraig Harrington, Ian Poulter and Justin Rose he had to make the most of McIlroy's burgeoning reputation.
It was hardly rocket science to pair him with his best mate Graeme McDowell, but it was an inspired move to send them out first on the opening day and in both sessions of the pivotal Saturday.
Both relished the role and delivered - the only time they lost was when sent out in the middle of the pack in the Friday fourballs where McGinley was trying to second guess his opposite number Thomas Bjorn.
"I like to take responsibility," said McIlroy after defeating Henrik Stenson in the top Sunday singles clash, a result that meant when McDowell wrapped up victory in the second singles against Robert Karlsson the contest was over with seven matches still live on the course.
Beforehand McGinley had reminded McIlroy of his pride in being unbeaten in singles play in pro-team golf. The Northern Ireland youngster said: "He told me this is the start of your singles record, go out and start it the way I have."
Colin Montgomerie, who watched the first three days here, is already talking about sending out McIlroy first at Celtic Manor in the 2010 Ryder Cup and it is music to the ears that reside beneath McIlroy's bushy black hair.
But more significant was McIlroy's observation that "I just want to be there."
Monty appointed McGinley and Bjorn to lead their respective sides in Versailles and should have gleaned plenty from the way the Irishman approached the job - the sorcerer could learn much from the apprentice.
While relishing the job, McGinley's only frustration was that he'd still prefer to be playing. "I'm not really ready for this," the 43-year-old Dubliner said.
The fact is he will be by 2014 and he must be favourite to lead Europe against the United States at Gleneagles.
This Vivendi Trophy was one-sided but there was plenty of intensity, particularly with Montgomerie's presence enhancing the Ryder Cup dimension.
Aside from the excellence of McIlroy and McDowell, Monty will have learned much from the positive way Chris Wood, Anthony Wall (until he was injured) and Ross Fisher responded to life in a team environment. The same can be said of Anders Hansen and Francesco Molinari in the European side.
It was a shame Seve Ballesteros wasn't able to make the journey for the presentation and this was probably as much to do with strained business relations over this event as the draining effects of recovering from the radio-therapy treatment for his brain tumour.
Significantly he referred to the event by its old name, the Seve Trophy, throughout his recorded message for the presentation ceremony.
What is certain is that this event does have a competitive value, providing Europe with an equivalent experience to the President's Cup clash between the US and the rest of the world in non-Ryder Cup years.
It is also right and proper that such an event should honour Ballesteros and it should be a key European Tour priority to make sure this match continues to satisfy both roles regardless of boardroom politics.
If they're not sure, they should just ask Rory McIlroy.