English version

by a neck

From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishby a neckby a neckinformalLITTLE/NOT MUCH if a race, especially a horse race, is won by a neck, the winner is only a very short distance in front Our horse won by a neck. neck
Examples from the Corpus
by a neckThe springing swan-bows, neck by neck, would slide homing into the sand-flats like silk.But things have now improved and sales in comparable shops are currently ahead of last year, if only by a neck.Although tying up, she battled on well to hold off Flying Speed by a neck.Our horse won by a neck.
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