JAMES FORD watched his try-happy York City Knights side smash all-time rugby league records – and then promised to give them an extra-tough week in training as reward.

The Knights scored a breathtaking 25 tries in walloping a woeful West Wales Raiders 144-0 at Bootham Crescent to storm to the top of Betfred League One on points-difference.

It was the biggest-ever win in professional rugby league on these shores, beating Huddersfield’s 142-4 thrashing of Blackpool and Barrow’s 138-0 pasting of Nottingham, both set in the Regal Trophy in 1994.

The Knights already held the Challenge Cup record win of 132-0 set against Northumbria University in 2011.

Ford, however, said the ease of victory did not give him much pleasure and warned his troops they faced a much harder time of it in the coming days as they prepare for their derby clash away to old arch-rivals Hunslet next weekend.

“I’m not particularly proud of beating a team by 140-odd points. I don’t think it’s great for the game or for League One,” explained Ford.

“Don’t get me wrong, I’m pleased for the players that they’ve achieved that record and I’m sure the supporters will be happy going in to work.

“But we’re not going to get carried away. We will have our toughest week this week to make sure we’re ready for a tough derby against Hunslet.”

Ford nevertheless was quick to laud his side’s professionalism and their try-fest show.

“It was obviously a commanding performance. The game was never in doubt from the off,” he said.

“We were really professional. We spoke about achieving little targets and building a positive performance and we’ve pretty much nailed those.

“I was happy with what we did. I’ve seen sides slacken off in these games, so the professionalism of my team – I must applaud that. They stuck to the game plan and were pretty ruthless and had a really good mentality.

“West Wales – I was a bit disappointed in their performance. But that project is bigger than this game. We need to judge them in three to five years and give them time to build.

“This game certainly won’t help them and I’m not sure it’s good for the league to see scorelines like that.

“I don’t want to be too critical. Their boys had a dig but were just massively outgunned. Hopefully they can fix one or two issues and give better performances.”

On whether he expected anything like a record score given the two teams’ recent form at opposite ends of the table, Ford said: “I never think about scorelines, more about the small things within a performance and nailing these. If you can do that, the scoreboard generally takes care of itself.”

Asked if the concern was now complacency after such a comfortable outing, Ford said: “That’s why we’ll have a really tough week. I’m already running stuff through my mind as regards what we’ll need to do in training.

“We won’t be underestimating Hunslet. They beat Oldham away, and we really rate Oldham, and they showed character to fight back and win that game, and they showed character to beat Workington too.

“We will have a tough week in preparation. We’re expecting a really intense, high-quality game.

“Hunslet-York games are always incredibly intense and we need to be well-prepared.”

On-loan full-back Kieren Moss’ seven tries beat Jonny Presley’s Knights record of six in a match set in the Northumbria cup tie, and equalled the all-time York RL record set by fellow Aussie Brad Davis against Highfield in 1995.

Added Ford: “At any standard of rugby league that’s hard to do so I’m really pleased for him.”