Renault team boss Eric Boullier has praised Vitaly Petrov's improved performance at the German Grand Prix.
The Russian rookie had been told ahead of the race that he needed to start scoring points in order to have a better shot at securing his future with the team.
"His future is in his hands. We have not been disappointed by him – he clearly is the best rookie in the paddock," said Boullier last week. "He did some very amazing jobs sometimes [but] he's clearly today lacking some consistency to get the points he deserves. We definitely need to have both cars scoring points, so that's obviously creating some rumors surrounding his race seat."
Petrov reacted with a solid performance in the Hockenheim race, where he finished in 10th position to score an extra point for the French squad. Boullier said the rookie's showing had surpassed the team's expectations.
"I have to say that he did more than we expected," Boullier told AUTOSPORT. "His qualifying pace was a bit down compared with Robert's – he made a mistake in one corner and he was very angry with himself. But his pace was good for most of the lap compared with Robert's.
"The race was just brilliant – you can't say any more that that – he matched Robert Kubica's pace. He was consistent and pushed when we asked him to push for strategic reasons to make sure that we passed the Williams cars and Kobayashi. He did very well."
He added: "We have recently asked him to score points and raise his game, and he did that. Now he has to do it every weekend and if he does, he has a great future in Formula 1."