The Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association of New Jersey (SBOANJ) announced Special Way has been named the N.J. Horse of the Year and Heritage Hill Farm has been selected as the N.J. Breeder of the Year.
The two-year-old trotting filly Special Way has a lifetime mark of 1:52 and winnings of $697,475. Winner of her last seven starts this season, including the elimination and the final of the Breeders Crown, three legs and the final of the Kentucky Championship Series, as well as the Bluegrass, where she took her record of 1:52.
Trained and driven by Ake Svanstedt for owners and breeders Brittany Farms LLC, Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld, Special Way is a true product of the New Jersey breeding program, being a daughter of New Jersey sire Walner and from a daughter of New Jersey sire Muscle Hill.
Dr. Steven Dey III’s Heritage Hill Farm has been selected as New Jersey Breeder of the Year. From a relatively small group of mares, the farm has bred the winners of more than $3.3 million in 2022, ranking 11th overall in North America.
Top performers from Heritage Hill Farm include Bythemissal, Niki Hill, Earthwindfire and Gotthegreenlight.
Bythemissal, the three-year-old pacing colt with earnings of more than $1.1 million, won the 2022 Little Brown Jug, Adios and the Millstein Memorial in world record-equalling 1:48.4.
The Dan Patch Award-winning two-year-old last year, Niki Hill came back despite an abbreviated campaign and was a major stakes winner in 2022, at three, with a lifetime mark of 1:48.4 and earnings of more than $1.3 million.
Earthwindfire, a two-year-old pacer, earned a lifetime mark of 1:51.3 and more than $300,000 in purse money. The three-year-old pacer Gotthegreenlight shined with a mark of 1:51.4 and lifetime earnings of $573,497. Both were top performers on the New York Sire Stakes circuit as well as the Grand Circuit.
Heritage Hill Farm is located in Monmouth County, spans 500 acres and has been a stalwart in New Jersey for approximately 60 years.
SBOANJ wishes congratulations to the connections of Special Way and to Dr. Steven Dey III and his team at Heritage Hill Farm.