Last month, we ran a series of letters to the year that was entitled, Dear 2020. This letter is from coach, color commentator and horseman of many hats Frank Madden to the year that is—2021—and all the hopes and expectations it carries.

Dear 2021,

Please be kind! We have dealt with a lot recently with your friend and predecessor 2020. 

2020 definitely made a mark and left an impression and legacy that will not soon be forgotten. 2020 will be remembered and talked about for the oh so many challenges and hard times that were thrown our way, one after the other.

But fortunately, 2020 doesn’t get the last word.

For me, 2020 will be remembered as one of the most challenging years for sure, but in addition to that I will remember how 2020 delivered so many good things too that have led us to you ready to take leaps forward and ready to celebrate all that we have learned.

We as a community found out how dedicated and resilient we are as we navigated a successful return to play not only for ourselves, but for our horses, our staff and industry workers and our riders with goals and dreams. 

We as a community faced some hard truths that needed to be faced and thanks to that, we are on a trajectory of change for the better in 2021. 

We persevered in 2020 and that is something to be very proud of. It’s a great place to start 2021 as we rebuild and continue towards a return to more normal time without leaving the good and even hard lessons behind. 

So 2021, just know you can’t scare us. We are stronger for having lived 2020. You have big shoes to fill in the way of lessons, but we have high hopes for you to be a year of celebrations and are looking forward with great hope and expectations as we honor our new found appreciation for “normal.”

Respectfully yours,

Frank Madden 

Feature image by AK Dragoo Photography