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on 24 February 2017
Horse Sport Ireland's marketing seminar will focus on the theme 'knowledge is power' to help move the industry forward through marketing

HORSE Sport Ireland have announced an impressive line-up of speakers for their International Marketing Symposium, taking place on Thursday, March 9th in the Hodson Bay Hotel, Athlone.

The event is aimed at equestrian industry professionals looking to grow their business and tap into the potential of international markets. The symposium will host speakers from the international equine industry to discuss topics such as digital marketing, equestrian sports technology, event management, equine tourism, breeding for a specific market, marketing your products and reaching the global market.

The speakers come from all sectors of the equine community and will offer an exceptional insight to their specialised markets and give a take-home message to all participants.

Knowledge is Power

Based on the theme ‘Knowledge is Power’, you will learn how to move the industry forward through marketing and how to build a strong foundation for your business.

These progressive techniques will help you to stay ahead of the global market and keep up to date with current trends.

This event is a DAFM National Event and HSI coaches will also be eligible for 1 CDP point.

The event will be hosted by MC Brendan McArdle of The Irish Field and chaired by agent and coach, Barry O’Connor. and journalist Suzanne Campbell.

Admission is €45. Book before Tuesday, February 28th to avail of a €10 early bird discount (€35).

Discounts available for group bookings.

Registration for this event closes Monday, March 6th, and places are limited so please book early to avoid disappointment. All attendees must register and pay in advance using the online facility -

For assistance with the registration process please contact Horse Sport Ireland on +353 (0)45-854546 or email:



Barry O’Connor is well known in the sport of show jumping as an agent, producer and coach. Conducting business across Europe and America, he has developed a deep understanding of the global equestrian marketplace and its requirements. Blackwood Lane in Malahide has been Barry’s base for the last 20 years, 10 of which he spent in partnership with international showjumper Conor Swail.

Barry started out in a riding school at the age of 11 before attending the Pony Club. As he moved up the ranks, he travelled to yards in Switzerland and Holland to gain valuable experience on the international scene. Barry still holds a strong emphasis on education, demonstrated in his work with the young breeder programme. Acting as an agent for the record breaking public auction €1.4 million sale of show jumper Dougie Douglas (ISH) at Goresbridge in 2015, he continues to remain active on the international scene, working closely with riders and other agents.


Author, journalist, and broadcaster Suzanne Campbell reports on farming and equestrian issues for RTÉ radio and television and writes for publications such as The Irish Times, The Irish Independent and The Gloss magazine.

Suzanne is a former series producer of RTÉ’s farming television series Ear To The Ground. She has won two Guild of Agricultural Journalists awards and has lectured in PR and marketing for the Public Relations Institute of Ireland.

She has chaired events for the Department of Agriculture, National Dairy Council and the Food Safety Authority of Ireland. She is a BHSAI, a hunt member and a keen follower of National Hunt racing.


Nina Barbour is the managing director of the Bolesworth Estate and show president of Liverpool International Horse Show and Bolesworth International. Event rider turned showjumper, Nina continues her father Anthony’s legacy at the Bolesworth Estate by exploring endless opportunities.

In 2008 Nina put on a leading national show at Bolesworth Estate, which grew to become a four-star International competition and in 2015, launched the Bolesworth Elite Auction at the show. She set up Harthill Stud with business partner Oliver Townend in 2009 and in 2016, Nina ran the first Liverpool International Horse Show. This new venture attracted 30,000 visitors over three days with sell-out performances. The CSI**** show has gone from strength to strength in sport and entertainment in 2017.


Jim Bolger is a thoroughbred racehorse trainer and breeder based in Coolcullen, Co Kilkenny. In a remarkable career that has spanned five decades, Jim has become more self-sufficient than any other top trainer around the world, with his world class breeding programme producing the vast majority of the horses that he trains. Jim possesses an insatiable work ethic, a trait that he instils in his horses.

In addition to his impeccable CV in the thoroughbred sector, Jim is an avid supporter of the sport horse sector. Once a show jumper himself, Jim has owned many show jumping and event horses competing at the highest level with riders such as two-time Olympic event rider Niall Griffin and Olympic bronze medallist Cian O’Connor.

AISLING BYRNE Journey Through Ireland

Co Longford’s Aisling Byrne is the managing director of Journey Through Ireland. Aisling has put Ireland on the global tourism map, bringing in clients from all over the world offering an authentic and enhanced travel experience that you won’t find anywhere else.

Aisling is also a showjumper and competes at venues all over Europe. In 2016 she started off the year by winning the Grand Prix and leading rider prize at Liverpool International CSI**** in the CSI AM A Final, driving away with a brand new Mini Cooper car. She then flew to the Winter Equestrian Festival in Florida where she picked up ‘Champion of the Week’ prize on a home-bred and produced Irish Sport Horse, before returning to Europe picking up ribbons at international shows such as Bolesworth, Vilamoura, Oliva and Opglabbeek to name but a few.


Diarmuid Byrne and his business partner Sam Watson launched EquiRatings, a data and content company for equestrian sport, with a strong focus on eventing, in 2015. Once a commercial lawyer, Diarmuid has turned his full attention to EquiRatings.

EquiRatings provide in-depth data, statistics and content to meet the needs of event organisers, media and governing bodies around the world. They have also designed a data driven analysis tool known as the ERQI (EquiRatings Quality Index) which is revolutionising safety analysis in the cross-country phase of eventing.

In their first year, EquiRatings were short-listed as ‘Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneurs 2015’ and won ‘Best Start Up’ and ‘Best Overall’ at the Carlow IBYE2015. The company is ever expanding and is currently beta testing a platform for show jumping as well as working with endurance data to discover new trends and indicators both in high performance and horse welfare.


Enda Carroll is the managing director at Ashford Farm in Bocholt, Belgium, one of Europe’s most successful trading stables, offering world-class facilities for horses and riders alike. Enda began his equestrian career working as a groom for Cian O’Connor.

He then focused on a sports career and worked his way up the ranks before taking a keen interest in scouting young horses that had the potential to be top show jumpers and began trading across Europe and America.

Ben Maher, Bertram Allen, Penelope Leprevost, Kevin Staut, Cameron Hanley and Geir Gulliksen among the list of riders who have found their mounts at Ashford Farm.

Enda has developed a strong trademark based on respect and trust, driven by his bold ambition.

KOEN TERRYN - Hippomundo

Konrad (Koen) Terryn from Ostend, Belgium, started his career as a freelance bloodstock agent in 1980 at 21 years of age and founded Horse Racing Magazine in 1987. In 1997 he created, which became a market leader in Belgium, Norway and Luxembourg. He sold that company and founded Quality Stud in 2007.

Koen noticed a lack of correct information on where his home-bred horses were competing. He sought a solution similar to that in the thoroughbred world and founded, an on-line platform where the data of the Warmblood world meets the sport results, producing performance or blacktype pedigrees.

Koen’s latest project is, a platform where Warmblood auctions all over the world meet new potential buyers.


Co Mayo event rider Tim Bourke is a former student of Gurteen Agricultural College. While working with Olympic rider Bruce Davidson in America, where he learned the inner workings of producing event horses to the top level of eventing, Tim realised he wanted to make it at the top of the sport.

He has established himself in Berryville, Virginia, as a top rider and sought-after trainer. In 2015, Tim and Luckaun Quality (ISH) completed their CCI**** at Rolex, finishing in 18th place and further improved on this in 2016, finishing 11th.

He was recently named to the Irish high performance list and is looking forward to the development and future success of Bourke Eventing. He is a great supporter of the Irish Sport Horse and sources many of his mounts from Ireland.


Successful British event rider Ben Hobday began riding at four years old. He became a working pupil for top showjumper William Funnell, and with William and his wife Pippa’s encouragement, Ben went on to win the under-21 national championships, which was followed by selection for Britain’s young rider squad.

In 2008, he won team gold and individual bronze medals at the European Championships at Krueth, Germany.

Since then, Ben has jumped clear at some of the biggest three and four star events in the world. The popular pair of Ben and Mulry’s Error (also known as “V8SuperCob”) have a huge following on social media.

International show jumper Marion Hughes has since been announced to speak at the conference, along with Erin Gilmore, senior editor and journalist at


Chair – Suzanne Campbell, Journalist for The Irish Times and Irish Independent and former producer at RTE.

Nina Barbour – President of Bolesworth International CSI4* and Liverpool International CSI4*, owner and competitor.

Diarmuid Byrne – Managing director of EquiRatings.

Aisling Byrne – Managing director or Journey Through Ireland and show jumper.

Erin Gilmore – Senior editor of and journalist.

Ben Hobday – British international event rider

**Fork Buffet Supper**


Chair – Barry O’Connor, Agent, Producer and Coach.

Jim Bolger – International owner and thoroughbred racehorse trainer.

Tim Bourke – Irish international event rider.

Marion Hughes – International show jumper, breeder, producer and Team Z7 rider.

Enda Carroll – Managing director of Ashford Farm.

Koen Terryn – CEO and founder of

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