To borrow a phrase from David Coulthard, there are good racing drivers and there are fast racing drivers. Romain Grosjean proved beyond doubt in his first full Formula 1 season that he is quick; he has yet to establish that he is good.
Grosjean edged team-mate Kimi Raikkonen in qualifying 10-9 over the course of the year but he was far too erratic in the races.
Strong performances in a handful of grands prix - especially Valencia and Canada - were undermined by a series of collisions with other drivers early in races.
Grosjean's stats and facts
- Team: Lotus
- Team-mate: Kimi Raikkonen
- Previous teams: Renault
- Nationality: French
- Born: 17/04/1986, Geneva, Switzerland
- Grand Prix debut: European (Valencia) 2009
His rivals - and the powers that be - became increasingly concerned until governing body the FIA finally decided enough was enough after Grosjean triggered a pile-up in Belgium that could have been very serious indeed. A one-race ban was the result.
He came back chastened, and drove like a frightened rabbit for much of the rest of the season.
But although he said he had learned from his mistakes, Grosjean triggered yet another crash by running into Mark Webber's Red Bull at the start in Japan, and then got involved in a very odd and ill-advised collision with Pedro de la Rosa's HRT in Brazil qualifying.
That last incident, in particular, led to renewed questions about his ability to judge risk.
In the end, after talks to establish that he realised where he was going wrong, Lotus decided to give him another chance. Given his pace, you can see why.
But the other drivers will be watching with interest and concern. Another season like 2012 will be accepted neither by them or Lotus, or the FIA.