Updated on 09/17/2011 11:10PM

Vanderlin upsets Play the King

Michael Burns Photo Ltd.
Vanderlin captures the $234,000 Play the King Handicap on Saturday at Woodbine.

English invader Vanderlin overhauled another longshot, Le Cinquieme Essai, in the final strides to capture the $234,000 on Saturday at Woodbine.

Vanderlin broke slowly from post 1 in the seven-furlong turf dash, and raced about three lengths off the pace along the rail on the turn.

Soaring Free, the favorite, and Ministers Wild Cat dueled through fractions of 22.19 and 45.91 seconds before both were overtaken by Le Cinquieme Essai in midstretch. After awaiting room, Vanderlin closed strongly in the final furlong to prevail by a head in a final time of 1:21.18. Frank's Selection was third, while Soaring Free faded to sixth in the 13-horse field.

"He was a little bit slowly away, but he picked it up good and came home well," said Martin Dwyer, who rode Vanderlin for trainer Andrew Balding.

In his first start with Lasix, Vanderlin returned $25.90 and banked $138,480 in the Grade 2 event, which is a major prep for the Sept. 18 Atto Mile.