Renault team principal Eric Boullier thinks that Vitaly Petrov's qualifying error in Belgium could ultimately serve as a blessing in disguise for the young Russian.
Petrov blew his chances of a decent qualifying slot in Spa last weekend when he failed to set a time after spinning off in Q1 when he drove across a wet curb.
Although he recovered in the race to finish ninth, the event showed that Petrov still has to improve if he is to reach the consistent level that his team wants to see before it re-signs him for next year.
Boullier praised the job that Petrov did in the race, but admitted that the error from qualifying was something that the F1 rookie had to learn from.
"It is sometimes hard to forgive a mistake like that he made, but this is F1 and it is not easy," Boullier told AUTOSPORT. "He did a very good race. He avoided all the traps from the rain and I have to say that he did a very good performance.
"It was good to put the car back in the points starting from where he was on the grid so he just needs to avoid this kind of mistake. But perhaps some good has come out of the bad, because it has maybe reminded him that he needs to stay concentrated and it is not because he had a good result in Budapest that it will be like this every weekend."
Although Petrov's ultimate speed has not been in doubt this season, Renault has been eager for him to be more consistent throughout a whole weekend – something he achieved in Budapest.
When asked if Petrov still had to make more progress judging by his error in Belgium, Boullier said: "I would say, yes, especially after the mistake [in qualifying]. Yes he brought some points home, but we need to have a solid second driver."