Eric Boullier has insisted that Romain Grosjean has done enough to deserve a second chance at F1 after the he was confirmed in the second seat with Lotus for the 2012 season.
Grosjean endured a ill-fated spell with Renault back in 2009 and lost his drive at the end of the season, going on to compete in sportscars before returning to GP2 to claim the title this season.
Having then taken part in Friday practice for two races with Renault, the team confirmed he would return to a race seat alongside Kimi Raikkonen next year after both Vitaly Petrov and Bruno Senna were dropped, and Boullier insisted that the decision to go with Grosjean was made on merit.
“Romain has been with us for quite a few months now and he has had several aims to achieve from the personal, professional and sporting points of view,” he said. “He had to find his footing again in a team which he left in what were certainly not the most reassuring circumstances.
“He achieved all these aims one by one until we decided to give him the opportunity to drive for us in free practice in the last two races of the season. He proved to the team that he had enough talent, speed and maturity to become one of the works drivers for next year.”
Boullier also denied that the decision to go with Grosjean was only down to his nationality.
“Absolutely not!” he said. “It was just another point in his favour. For our French partners like Total it's a godsend to be able to take advantage of his presence as one of our drivers.”