Hull's brilliant December ended with a fifth win in six games against Leeds on Saturday and manager Steve Bruce was left hoping for Premier League football, just a year after being sacked by Sunderland.
City are second in the table heading into 2013 and beaten boss Neil Warnock said he could not see them being overtaken by anyone between now and the end of the season.
Goals from Corry Evans and David Meyler did the trick for City and both camps were left saluting the home side afterwards.
"For someone who has won seven promotions as a manager, that's a fine compliment from Neil," Bruce said.
"I hope it's not an attempt at skullduggery from him! I have enjoyed the last five or six months here, though, and all I wanted to do was get back to work. I was out of work a year ago, so I'm really pleased."
City have taken 16 points from 18 in December, with their only slip coming in their failure to see off a dogged Leicester on Boxing Day.
"It's been a huge month for us. Six games, won five, drawn one..." Bruce said. "I couldn't have wished for a better return. We looked like we wouldn't score in the first half but we went about our business properly and we were great to watch. Some of our players, Sone Aluko, you'd pay to watch."
It was perhaps Leeds' most anaemic performance of the season, with just one half-chance of note on an afternoon when 17-goal striker Luciano Becchio was benched because of concern over a thigh problem.
Warnock is desperate for the January transfer window to come in order to bolster his squad - new owners GFH Capital were present on Saturday - and the veteran boss knows Hull are the benchmark.
"I think Hull are a one-off, I don't think there's another team like them in the league," he said. "They are by far the best organised team in the league, they play the same home and away. They have a good squad with decent replacements."