Good things come to those who wait, just ask Anthony Crossland.
The popular Bendigo harness racing trainer celebrated Group One success with his stable star Rules Don't Apply at Melton on Friday night.
The victory came 12 months after Crossland thought the trotter could taste Group One success, but the then three-year-old galloped in the Vicbred Super Series Final and lost all chance of winning.
There was to be no such bad luck on Friday night as trainer/driver Crossland prepared and then drove Rules Don't Apply to perfection to win the Vicbred Super Series Final for four-year-old trotters.
"They're the wins that you put in all the hard work for,'' Crossland said.
"It was a hard pill to swallow last year, so for everything to come together this year was really good. This was the race we've had our eyes on for 12 months.
"He's the best horse I've trained."
Rules Don't Apply settled midfield early before Crossland surged forward with a lap to go to sit outside the leader Cover of Darkness.
With race favourite Powederkeg back in the pack, Crossland let Rules Don't Apply loose down the back straight and he put a gap on his rivals.
Powederkeg looked threatening coming around the home turn, but Crossland and Rules Don't Apply had plenty left in the tank.
Rules Don't Apply held the favourite at bay and Crossland saluted the crowd as he crossed the line to secure his fourth Group One victory as a trainer.
"When there was such a strong lead time everyone was working more than they should have to hold their position,'' Crossland said.
"I was always confident the leaders would come back to us and that my horse would get into the race at some point.
"He was strong at the finish, he did it relatively within himself."
A big group of owners celebrated the Group One win.
"There were a lot more texts on my phone compared to what there normally is,'' Crossland said.
"Everyone enjoyed the win."
The ownership group includes former Geelong star Billy Brownless and a syndicate called The MIghty Burra Syndicate, which is a group of former Eaglehawk footballers headed by premiership player and star goalkicker Matt Gretgrix.
"G-Train (Gretgrix) was pretty pumped,'' Crossland said.
"He's raced horses with me for years and he was the best man at my wedding.
"It's good to race a good horse with your good mates."
There's more fun to be had for Crossland and the owners.
The trainer was confident Rules Don't Apply would continue to develop as gets older.
"We always thought he wasn't a juvenile which is why he's only had 20 starts,'' Crossland said.
"He's always been kept back in preparation for when he gets older.
"For now, we'll look towards the Great Southern Star with him. He might have one or two more starts before then."
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