RESURGENT York City cantered to their first victory in seven visits to the Racecourse Ground on Saturday.

Racing out of the stalls, City scored three times in the first 24 minutes against a Wrexham team who went into the match top of the Blue Square Bet Premier table.

Not since goals from Neil Thompson and Richard Cresswell secured a 2-1 victory in 1998 have the Minstermen won in North Wales with Paddy McLaughlin, Ashley Chambers and Jamie Reed guaranteeing this welcome win 13 years on.

The result and performance was another great triumph for, and powerful vindication of, Mills’ admirable football philosophy and favoured 4-3-3 formation.

His methods might have been questioned in certain quarters following back-to-back defeats by Alfreton and Tamworth and those concerns were not entirely allayed by Tuesday night’s nervy 1-0 home win over Bath City.

But, for anybody with short enough memories to disregard last month’s terrific victories against Kettering and Barrow, a timely reminder was served up of the team’s potential on Saturday.

Quite simply, if City keep possession and play with the same tempo and belief that they did at Wrexham, no side will be able to live with them in non-League football.

The key challenge now, however, is to iron out the inconsistency that has seen a team capable of turning over the division’s top team 3-0 also lose at home to a bottom-of-the-table outfit in Alfreton this season.

Ridiculously at times, considering their hosts’ league standing, City made Saturday’s contest look like an exhibition game such was their one-touch superiority.

The Minstermen were, however, also aided by an awful defensive showing by the Dragons during the first half.

Dean Saunders must have regretted his decision to leave the ever-imposing Mark Creighton on his bench until the interval with the gap between his two first-half centre-backs Chris Westwood and Nat Knight-Percival bordering on the incomprehensible.

Erratic Cameroonian goalkeeper Joslain Mayebi was also charging off his line unpredictably and the whole back four were taking unnecessary risks and carelessly surrendering possession in dangerous areas against a City side ready to swarm on every mistake.

Recently-named skipper Scott Kerr enjoyed his best display of the campaign, orchestrating proceedings in the middle of the park before tiring a little towards the end of the game.

Jon Challinor also called on all his experience to put in a mature showing after being asked to switch from midfield to right-back, proving a solid defensive adversary for Wrexham’s top scorer, Jake Speight, and a reliable retainer of possession.

In the centre of defence, meanwhile, another versatile performer in Jamal Fyfield justified his selection with another athletic and focused performance, and City are still to concede a goal in three hours of football since he was installed alongside David McGurk.

Wrexham did manage the first shot of the match but Mathias Pogba’s volley only required a comfortable save from Dragons old boy Michael Ingham and the visitors then forged ahead in the fourth minute.

Jason Walker tumbled to the floor under a challenge from Knight-Percival and a previously-rehearsed free-kick routine reaped dividends.

Northern Ireland under-21 international McLaughlin touched the ball to his right for Chambers only for the former Leicester striker to swiftly knock it back into his midfield team-mate’s path.

McLaughlin then despatched an unstoppable 25-yard drive into Mayebi’s top right-hand corner.

Shortly afterwards, with Mayebi stranded off his line, Walker’s attempted lob was diverted wide by Westwood’s head.

On 14 minutes, Walker also saw the Wrexham stopper palm another effort around a post after McLaughlin had released City’s leading scorer through the left channel.

Andre Boucaud was the next to spot a hole in the home defence when he played in Reed, whose low drive was saved at the near post.

A second goal seemed inevitable and duly arrived in the 21st minute when Ingham’s long goal kick saw Walker outjump Knight-Percival in the air and Chambers charged clear to sidefoot past Mayebi from eight yards.

Three minutes later, City took a less direct route to claiming their third goal.

A slick passing move ended with Chambers feeding the ball into Reed’s feet in the penalty box.

The former Dragons forward then turned Knight-Percival far too easily before beating Mayebi with a sidefooted finish off the overworked ’keeper’s left-hand post.

Outclassed Wrexham wasted their best first-half opportunity on 39 minutes when Speight drilled into the sidenetting with only Ingham to beat after Andy Morrell’s through ball.

The second half saw City defend their advantage intelligently with early charges into the box by Reed and Walker only repelled by well-timed covering tackles by Creighton and Neil Ashton respectively.

On 64 minutes, Dean Keates might have done better than shoot weakly at Ingham when the ball fell to his feet six yards from goal after fellow substitute Creighton had won a header in City’s penalty box.

Pogba’s strong edge-of-the-box effort was also well gathered by Ingham, who later stretched out his right leg to deny Speight after Kerr had lost the ball to gift the former Bradford and Mansfield striker a free run on goal.

City substitute Michael Potts, though, might have secured a far from flattering scoreline for the visitors on 88 minutes, displaying nimble footwork before seeing his dipping, angled shot narrowly clear the crossbar from 20 yards.

The loss still represented unsuspecting Wrexham’s first home defeat since Luton won by the same scoreline in last season’s play-off semi-final.

Match facts

Wrexham 0, York City 3 (McLaughlin 4; Chambers 21; Reed 24)

York City: Michael Ingham 8, Jon Challinor 9, David McGurk 9, Jamal Fyfield 9, James Meredith 8, Andre Boucaud 9, Scott Kerr 9, Patrick McLaughlin 8, Jamie Reed 8, Jason Walker 8, Ashley Chambers 9.

Substitutions: Matty Blair 7 (for Reed, 66), Michael Potts 7 (for Boucaud, 69). Not used: Chris Smith, Daniel Parslow, Liam Henderson.

Key: 10 – Faultless; 9 – Outstanding; 8 – Excellent; 7 – Good; 6 – Average; 5 – Below par; 4 – Poor; 3 – Dud; 2 – Hopeless; 1 – Retire.

City’s star man: Fyfield – did not put a foot wrong on the floor and commanding in the air.

Wrexham: Joslain Mayebi, Curtis Obeng (Mark Creighton, 46), Chris Westwood, Nat Knight-Percival, Neil Ashton, Jay Harris, Lee Fowler, Jamie Tolley (Adrian Cieslewicz, 70), Andy Morrell (Dean Keates, 46), Mathias Pogba, Jake Speight. Subs not used: Glen Little, Obi Anuro.

Yellow cards: Pogba 42, Kerr 63, Fowler 90.

Shots on target: Wrexham 7, York City 7.

Shots off target: Wrexham 5, York City 2.

Corners: Wrexham 1, York City 5.

Offsides: Wrexham 2, York City 4.

Fouls conceded: Wrexham 16, York City 22.

Referee: Wayne Barratt (Worcester). Rating: upset the home crowd with his impartiality. A strong appointment.

Attendance: 3,872.

Shot of the match: McLaughlin’s fourth-minute goal could not have been more sweetly struck.

Passes of the match: Through balls by McLaughlin and Kerr led to chances.

Head to head - Jay Harris v Paddy McLaughlin

City’s Northern Ireland under-21 international made a positive return to the side and was instrumental in the visitors’ purposeful start to the game. Harris and fellow midfielder Fowler were left chasing McLaughlin’s shadow for much of the opening exchanges and his goal was a terrific strike.

The former Newcastle midfielder did fade a little and could be stronger in the tackle but his influence on the game was still greater than Harris, who struggled to carry his team forward in the same manner.