NORTH Ribblesdale overcame a potential banana skin with a commanding performance on Yarnbury's 4G pitch on Saturday.

The game was played at a frenetic pace from the first whistle with young starlet scrum half Jack Hutchinson scoring two opportune tries in the first 15 minutes using his blistering acceleration to scythe through blindside gaps to give Ribb an early lead. Tom Davidson added the conversion.

The hosts struck back with a well worked try from dangerous winger Plant.

Ribb were playing all the rugby and relished the artificial surface, something they have not done in recent times, but this young team is on top form and quick ball and support play was the order of the day. The next score was another gem from full back Ben Coultherd whose pace was too much for a grasping home defence. Not to be outdone the forwards won a penalty try on the stroke of the interval to give Ribb their bonus point and a 26-12 lead.

Ribb were no less impressive in the second half in atrocious weather conditions but chose to kick penalties as the home side became ever-more desperate. Tom Davidson kicked three of the penalties and then another fine try from Coultherd sealed a fine victory.

Speedy winger Plant got his second and a late consolation as Yarnbury finally withered under Ribbs' relentless attacks. With second placed Wath slipping up at Baildon, Ribb are now four points clear at the top with three to play.

Three more wins of any sort will see the title wind its way to Ribb and after their thirteenth straight league win, few would deny this fine young team their deserving accolade.

This was a well deserved win and for the first time this season there is now some daylight between Ribb and the chasing pack. Promotion is now looking more likely than not, but nothing will be taken for granted until the maths say so.

Up next is Roundhegians away on March 16 for the league leaders.