RUNCORN Linnets ensured Charnock Richard will not want to return to the Millbank Linnets Stadium in a hurry.

After Saturday’s first visit, for a game between two form free-scoring teams with promotion hopes, their journey back up the M6 would have been forlorn following a 6-2 loss.

Linnets, in recording their ninth Hallmark Security League Premier Division win on the bounce and taking a 10-point lead at the top, established the lead after only three minutes.

Kris Holt ran straight through the heart of Charnock’s defence and despite being brought down by goalkeeper Adam Halton, the ball was picked up by Mike Simpson to roll it into the empty net.

Paul Shanley was brought down by a sliding tackle for a clear penalty and Danny O’Brien made no mistake from the spot.

An excellent save from Terry Smith denied Charnock a way back, diving to his right at full stretch to tip Matt Davison’s effort around the post.

With half an hour gone, the task became all the more difficult for the Villagers as they were reduced to 10 men as right-back Spencer Bibby was shown a red card for a late challenge.

Within a minute, the Linnets scored a decisive third goal when O’Brien sent in a corner kick that Freddie Potter nodded home.

A diagonal ball into the penalty area was headed back across goal by Holt for Potter to stab home the hosts’ fourth goal.

Charnock continued to throw men forward and it allowed Shanley a free run into the penalty area from where the forward picked out Potter for his hat-trick.

Substitutions led to Matty Atherton making his 300th appearance for Linnets.

Charnock scored the first of a couple of consolation goals before Linnets bagged the goal of the day with five minutes remaining.

Shanley once again tormented Charnock on their right side and picked out front man Mitch Bryant, who with a drop of the shoulder created a yard of space for himself to finish.

Linnets: Terry Smith, Louis Corrigan, Aaron Morris, Jimmy Moore, Danny O’Brien, Kieran Nolan, Kris Holt, Mchael Simpson, Freddie Potter, Paul Shanley, Antony Hickey. Subs: Matt Atherton, Adam Jones, Mitch Bryant. Not used: Mark Houghton, Chris Lawton.

Attendance: 363.