The new prime minister was met by an applauding crowd upon pulling up to Conservative HQ, and proceeded to shake the hands of his happy colleagues one by one, putting his arm around a few of them.
He went first to close ally Mel Stride, then Jake Berry, Tory Party chair, before moving onto other close aides.
Until he came face to face with Hancock, who served in Boris Johnson’s cabinet as health secretary alongside Sunak, who was chancellor at the time.
Sunak swiftly avoided Hancock’s excited gaze, dodges any handshake and moves on to the person besides him – making his former colleague the only Tory at the front of the crowd not to be greeted directly by the new party leader.
Hancock doesn’t pause his clapping during this painful and very public snub, but the camera does catch his faltering expression.
And it seemed everybody noticed...
To recap, while Sunak left Johnson’s cabinet by resigning in July, triggering a mass exodus of ministers from the government, Hancock left under a cloud in July 2021.
Leaked CCTV footage of Hancock kissing one of his aides, Gina Coladangelo, while in his office against the strict social distancing measures his own department had been preaching forced him out of the cabinet.
It was quite the fall from grace for one of the leading figures in government during the height of the pandemic.
Hancock and Sunak used to sit next to each other in cabinet, and the former health secretary was one of those who nominated his colleague for the leadership role.