By Derek Davis at Portman road
Kevin Nolan took Newcastle to the top of the Championship with a performance which would have made Sir Bobby Robson proud. Nolan hit a hat-trick and Ryan Taylor, the architect of the first goal scored from a superb free-kick to devastate Ipswich.
The Magpies scored three goals in four first-half minutes to crush Roy Keane's side, who have now made their club's worst ever start to a season.
On an emotional afternoon at Portman Road, both sets of fans paid tribute to the late Sir Bobby throughout as Ipswich renamed a stand in honour of their former manager, who died in July.
Robson's dismissal from St James' Park was followed by a dismal spiral into the Championship but the signs are that Newcastle are heading back to the top flight. With West Bromwich Albion losing at Crystal Palace, Chris Hughton knew his side could go top of the table and set out with purpose. Nile Ranger twice had shots tipped around a post by Richard Wright as Newcastle played with a sharpness and precision Ipswich's shaky defence could not cope with.
Nolan responded to being booked for a foul by destroying Ipswich. First he got ahead of Damien Delaney and on to a near-post free-kick by Taylor to head in. Then he left Pim Balkestein in his wake before beating Wright with a calm finish.
Newcastle were rampant, and they went 3-0 up in the 34th minute. Ranger was fouled on the left-hand side and Taylor stepped up to curl a fine 25-yard free-kick over the wall and into the top corner.
Nolan completed his hat-trick in the 50th minute. Zurab Khizanishvili charged down the right wing before laying the ball off to Taylor. He picked out Ranger at the back post, and his header back across goal looked like finding the net until Nolan arrived to nod the ball over the line.
Hughton said: "It was a special day for Sir Bobby and it was a special result and a special performance. It is a great feeling to be able to go in at half time with a three-goal cushion. It was a case in the second half of not conceding and we did that. It was excellent from start to finish."