In a year when the category was flooded with front running rookie talent, it was an experienced hand that stole the show. Pre-season favourite Nico Hulkenberg lived up to his billing and - once a shaky start was out of the way - he delivered time and again, while nobody in either the European or British championships was able to sustain any such period of dominance.
It's easy to get carried away with achievements in Formula 3, and spend too much time on the minor details and the ins and outs of the competition, while neglecting the bigger picture. To simplify things, every driver on the grid is there because he or she wants to be a Formula One driver - or at the very least a paid driver in some form of top-line motorsport.
As unfair as it might seem, a champion could go no further while the guy that finished fourth ends up in F1. For the drivers, it's all about making an impression. Forget points and podiums, they need to do something to stand out from the crowd and attract support from the next level, whether it be an F1 team, a manufacturer or other driver scheme, or a well-funded sponsor.