Scientific and Equine Consultant Dr David Marlin has highlighted the growing importance of the Alltech-Hartpury Conference after appearing at this year’s event as a keynote speaker.
The author of more than 200 scientific papers and book chapters, Dr Marlin’s recent studies include work for the FEI in climate management for the 2018 World Equestrian Games and 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
He is currently working on projects related to welfare in endurance, nutrition, protective boots and personality types in equestrian sports, and holds the academic position of Adjunct Professor in Physiology at Oklahoma State University.
At the latest Alltech-Hartpury Conference, he delivered a presentation titled ‘Managing equestrian events in challenging climates a quarter century on from the Barcelona Olympics’.
Now in its eighth year, the conference is aimed at higher education students and scientists interested in the application of emerging scientific and business-orientated research to enhance all aspects of the equine industry.
This year, students submitted and presented papers that reviewed new studies within the field of Equestrian Science, including broad themes such as equine behaviour and welfare, and equine business management.
Dr Marlin, consultant to the British Equestrian Federation since 1994, and a member of the BEF Scientific Advisory Group said: “The conference has become more of an important date for people and the standards are getting higher and higher.
“This conference is nice environment in which young people can start presenting, and in the UK there aren’t that many opportunities to present in such a friendly environment.
“A lot of people who wouldn’t necessarily present come to watch and see that it’s not a scary environment. Then the next year they get encouraged by their supervisors and present themselves.
“You could get a few tricky questions, but it’s not the same as presenting at a major scientific conference where you could be judged quite harshly.
“It’s a great opportunity for students to get a taste of conferences and research.”
The conference also included a presentation by Dr David Davies, founder of Silage Solutions Ltd, called ‘Producing haylage for horses – The do’s and don’ts to achieve a high-quality safe feed’.
Hartpury’s Senior Lecturer in Equine Science Kirsty Leniak, the conference organiser, said: “We’d like to thank Dr Marlin and Dr Davies for agreeing to attend the conference as our keynote speakers.
“We’d also like to express our appreciation to Alltech for their continued support and for awarding the prizes for the best oral and poster presentations and this year, in honour of Dr Pearse Lyons, the prize for the most novel project idea.
“We’re pleased with the positive feedback we have received from attendees and we’re already looking forward to hosting the event again next year.”
Picture: David Marlin at the Alltech-Hartpury Conference