08/15/2005 11:00PM

Electrocutionist by a neck

Edward Whitaker/Racing Post
From left: Electrocutionist wins the Juddmonte International over Zenno Rob Roy, with Maraahel in third.

Electrocutionist set sparks flying at York on Tuesday when he came late to nip Zenno Rob Roy in a thrilling renewal of the Group 1, $832,000 Juddmonte International Stakes.

The victorious Italian invader, a Kentucky-bred son of Red Ransom owned by New Yorker Earle Mack, defeated Japanese champion Zenno Rob Roy by a neck, with Maraahel a head back in third. The 9-4 favorite, Ace, was just another half-length behind in fourth.

At the eighth pole, those four plus Norse Dancer raced in a line across the track. Norse Dancer, who was running in his 19th Group 1 contest, was the first to give way, but the others all battled on in a race that was not decided until the final strides.

Michael Kinane, who was riding the 9-2 Electrocutionist for the first time, came from last to first on a horse who in Italy was used to being on or near the pace. Trainer Valfredo Valiani left Kinane to his own devices, however, and they proved successful despite the choppiness of ground officially labeled good. The winning time for the 1 1/4 miles and 88 yards was 2:07.47, less than a second off the track mark.

Valiani said that the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe on Oct. 2 at Longchamp would be next on Electrocutionist's agenda, after which he is hopeful of securing a place in the Breeders' Cup Turf. That seems likely, as Electrocutionist has now won 6 of his 7 starts, among them the 1 1/4-mile Group 1 Gran Premio di Milano.

Zenno Rob Roy was valiant in defeat under Yutaka Take. A 5-year-old son of Sunday Silence, Zenno Rob Roy won three Grade 1 races in Japan last year, including a three-length victory in the Japan Cup. Trainer Kazuo Fujisawa also has the Arc in mind for Zenno Rob Roy, but may send him first to the Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown on Sept. 10.

* Sixteen sprinters will line up at York for the $362,000 Nunthorpe Stakes on Thursday. The five-furlong Group 1 dash has attracted Chineur, the Mikael Delzangles-trained winner of Royal Ascot's Group 2 King's Stand Stakes who may be the best French sprinter in the last quarter century. A 4-year-old son of Fasliyev, to be ridden by Christophe Lemaire, Chineur will have to hold off The Trader and catch the speedy Benbaun, the pair who finished one-two in the Group 2 Prix du Gros-Chene on June 5.