For all the hopes of Max Verstappen being reeled in by the chasing pack, he just smiles and waves, as he did so in the 2023 United States Grand Prix weekend.
The only brief scare was losing Grand Prix pole by a track violation that would not have counted on Saturday after the white lines were widened on the Turn 19 exit by the FIA after driver complaints.
This lap would have been good enough for pole by just 0.005s but in the end, Verstappen just about held on after managing brake problems that allowed Lewis Hamilton to close to just over a second behind at the flag.
Hamilton would subsequently be chucked out, along with Charles Leclerc, for an excessively worn plank as Verstappen claimed a 50th Grand Prix win of his career ahead of Lando Norris and Carlos Sainz.
Remember how it was once said nobody would ever get close to overhauling Hamilton's tally of wins after he passed Michael Schumacher's 91...
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Winner - Sergio Perez
Ninth on the grid was a poor result with the whole idea being Sergio Perez should be there to pick up the Verstappen pieces if something goes wrong.
His race was strong at times, but went missing a little towards the end as a lack of tyre life began to bite through the field, but the reason Perez is a winner is the fact that his P2 in the Drivers' is almost secure thanks to Hamilton's disqualification.
Second vs fifth on the road had allowed Hamilton to whittle the lead down by a further eight points, but with Perez taking fourth once the Mercedes was removed, the points gap has ballooned to 39.
Hopefully, that should take some pressure off Perez's shoulders to achieve just about the only thing Red Bull has not in F1 - a one-two in the Drivers.'
What did Perez say?
"We need to make sure we learn from this weekend as there are some good understandings to make for Mexico. There is a bit more pace in there."
Loser - Lewis Hamilton
Up until the moment FIA Technical Delegate Jo Bauer and his team discovered the wear on the plank, Hamilton was a cast certainty to be a winner.
The W14 looked a vastly improved beast in Austin with the floor upgrades working well and shining a light on a development path that can be used going forward.
His pace in the Sprint and race was strong, especially hunting down Norris early on and eating into Verstappen's lead late on. This was a weekend of vintage Hamilton who appeared confident and not in a funk.
The only trouble is that breaches of the technical regulations are black and white and can't be argued like a sporting penalty which is open to interpretation.
As soon as it was found, for whatever the reason, that P2 trophy was heading to Norris and McLaren.
It is the first time Hamilton has been disqualified from a Grand Prix since the 2009 Australian GP, when stewards at the next race in Malaysia discovered he had lied to them about radio communications with McLaren and the passing of Timo Glock under Safety Car conditions.
He was also chucked out of qualifying for the 2021 Sao Paulo Grand Prix.
What did Hamilton say?
"It is of course disappointing to be disqualified post-race but that doesn't take away from the progress we've made this weekend."
Winner - Lance Stroll
Lance Stroll has taken a hammering at times this season, and rightly so for some dreadful performances that will likely cost Aston Martin fourth in the Constructors'.
This weekend got off to the worst possible start with limited running in FP1 thanks to a brake problem before early elimination in qualifying.
Aston elected to try something drastic and so put Stroll and Fernando Alonso on different specifications to test the upgrades brought - Stroll keeping the newer parts.
From the pit-lane, he kept his nose clean and drove a strong race by going long in the middle stint, coming home ninth on the road.
He was boosted to seventh in the end for his first points since ninth in Belgium and best result since sixth in Spain.
This was a much-needed confidence boost for a driver who has been looking devoid of any self-belief in recent times.
It is small, but it provides a foundation for Stroll to now build off of. He's done the easy bit in arresting the alarming dip in form, but now needs to take the hard step and ensure he doesn't spiral again.
What did Stroll say?
"It's good to be back in the points after some difficult races. The set-up changes we made to optimise the performance have definitely put us in the right direction; we were much more competitive."
Loser - Charles Leclerc
Leclerc was already going down as a Loser as finishing sixth on the road from pole position usually means something has gone badly wrong.
It is the 10th straight pole position he has failed to convert into a win, a run stretching back to the 2022 Australian Grand Prix when he did win.
Ferrari must also take a look at itself for sticking rigidly to the one-stop that was clearly never going to work - or at least get Leclerc home in any sort of decent shape.
At least he didn't fight with team-mate Carlos Sainz when told to let him through - which ended up with a podium for the team and taking five points out of Mercedes' advantage in the race for P2 in the Constructors'.
It sort of summed his day up to be disqualified.
What did Leclerc say?
"We could have and I could have done many things so it's very difficult but a better [result] than P6 [was possible] I'm sure."
Winner - Yuki Tsunoda
That Daniel Ricciardo comeback headline you had in mind? Park it, as Yuki Tsunoda put in an excellent drive to be classified eighth in the end.
This, coupled with a final lap attempt for the fastest lap saw him bank five points and double AlphaTauri's haul for the entire season in one go.
The team is now just two points behind Haas and six behind Alfa Romeo in the race to avoid the wooden spoon in the Constructors'.
Tsunoda must keep this level of performance up. It is as simple as that. He's been given a fourth season in 2024 having not done a great deal to forcibly stake his claim for a long-term seat, maybe even at Red Bull.
This was a standout performance.
As for Ricciardo, he was let down by attempting a one-stopper and came home 15th and last having held fastest lap until the team rightfully hauled Tsunoda in for the last lap attempt.
What did Tsunoda say?
"I got a heart attack when the team called me in to box, because I thought there was an issue, but they told me we were going for the fastest lap on the soft tyre. It was my first experience going for the fastest lap in the final lap of the race, and I really enjoyed it, it was thrilling."
Winner - Logan Sargeant
Given the season Logan Sargeant has had, perhaps his first point was always destined to come in the United States Grand Prix, and in an unconventional manner.
All the raw ingredients are there for Sargeant. He is quick, can match Alex Albon in the sister car and has the right attitude, but everything is just not mixing leading to the pressure on him to retain his seat.
He finished 6.2s behind Albon on the road in 11th and 12th, respectively, but the gap was only 1.2 after a track limits penalty.
This became ninth and 10th - Williams first double haul in an actual race since Hungary 2021 (Belgium 2021 should not count), with the Floridian picking up one point after the DSQs were applied.
It is the 999th point scored by an American driver in the World Championship and first since Michael Andretti at the 1993 Italian Grand Prix for McLaren.
A timely boost for Sargeant who can now express himself now the chip is off his shoulder.
What did Sargeant say?
"It’s amazing to score my first point in F1 on home turf after the challenging weekend I’ve had. I’m so proud of this team and myself for the hard work and progress we’ve been making this season."