Cardiff City landed a significant blow in the fight for Championship survival as they totally outplayed relegation rivals Peterborough United.
Cardiff bookended a brilliant first half with goals for Joe Ralls and Aden Flint - and there could have been more.
Jordan Hugill's volley made it three, after a spectacular run and cross from Cody Drameh, before Uche Ikpeazu came on to score the Bluebirds' fourth.
Victory takes Cardiff 12 points clear of Peterborough and the bottom three.
As for Darren Ferguson's side, they remain 22nd in the table, grateful that Reading's defeat at Bristol City means they have not lost any ground to the team immediately above them.
What this result does do, however, is cast them further adrift from a Cardiff side who remain in 20th place despite a third successive league win, but now with a sizeable gap between themselves and the drop zone.
The importance of this encounter had been underlined by Cardiff's team selection for Sunday's 3-1 FA Cup defeat at Liverpool. Despite the allure of a televised match against the Premier League giants, Bluebirds manager Steve Morison had rested several first-team players with an eye on this fixture against Peterborough.
Judging by Cardiff's performance - arguably their best of the season - it was a masterstroke from Morison.
His side were on top from the first minute to the last, a complete team performance featuring sparkling individual displays from recalled players such as Drameh, Tommy Doyle and Isaak Davies.
Three minutes into the game, Doyle hit the post with a finely angled shot from 20 yards and, seconds later, his midfield colleague Ralls put the home side in front.
Davies was the goal's architect, stealing possession on the right side before driving forward and playing a low pass across the penalty area, which Ralls met with a first-time side-footed shot which he guided into the bottom corner.
Davies almost created another goal when he seized on a loose back-pass from Josh Knight, but the young Cardiff winger was too quick for his team-mates as his pull-back evaded everyone.
Doyle was another outstanding player of the first half, as his set-piece delivery caused havoc for Peterborough.
A free-kick from the Manchester City loanee was glanced on to the post by Hugill, who then wasted a glorious chance as he headed a Doyle corner over from six yards.
The hosts doubled their lead as Peterborough keeper Steven Benda - on loan from Swansea City - failed to catch a corner and the ball fell to Flint, who chested it and drilled a fine finish low into the net.
The pick of the goals came after an hour as Drameh provided one of the assists of the season.
The right wing-back, on loan from Leeds, burst forward from his own half, left Peterborough's hapless defenders trailing behind him as he soared into opposition territory and clipped a cross to the front post, where Hugill volleyed in.
With five minutes left, two substitutes combined for Cardiff's fourth as Rubin Colwill crossed into a similar area to the one Drameh had found for Hugill, and replacement Ikpeazu was on hand to convert and score a second goal for the club in only his second substitute appearance.
Cardiff City: Smithies, Drameh, Ng, Flint, McGuinness, Bagan, Wintle, Ralls (Vaulks 71’), Doyle (Colwill 81’), Hugill (Ikpeazu 75’), Davies. Subs not used: Phillips, Denham, Pack, Harris.
Peterborough United: Benda, Edwards, Knight (Brown 45’), Kent, Marriott (Ward 60’), Poku, Norburn, Morton, Mumba, Fuchs, Coulson (Clarke-Harris 60’). Subs not used: Cornell, Szmodics, Jones.