No birthday present could have been better for Port Macquarie athlete Jakob Webber than being crowned in the top ten at the Cheerleading World Championships.
The First State Allstars coach and Sydney based East Coast All Stars member spent his twenty-second birthday training for six hours before the competition and was thrilled with an eighth place finish.
His ECAS team making their way to a world ranking of 13 initially in the competition held in Orlando, Florida.
The team would then improve their ranking to finish with a flourish in eighth place at Walt Disney World Resort.
"On the second day we were against 28 other teams from around the world, they had cut off a lot of the other teams from the first day to leave the top three teams from each country," he said.
"It was a bit of an average day, we weren't great but not horrible.
"After the second day were ranked eighth because we were a lot better and our placing moved up, it was an awesome feeling.
"The fact that we made top ten was really thrilling because we got to go up on stage and received our trophy in a big presentation, that was an awesome feeling.
"I can't really explain it, it was just hectic and there was all these lights in our eyes, thousands of people watching... it was crazy."
During the stunning showcase of stunts Mr Webber was coordinating the timing for the team of 22 and maintaining their rhythm while also throwing in some tricks of his own.
"All the way through from beginning to end I was acting more in the back spot role, making sure the flyers stay up in the air," he said.
"I do a lot of the counting in the routine, make sure everyone is hitting the right spots.
"There are also some extending back flips, I did a lot more partner stunting than tumbling."
The Port Macquarie cheer leading star was only selected for the world team during try-outs held in November last year.
Racking up the mileage before the comp, Webber had been training in Newcastle and Sydney to stay competitive.
"It's pretty surreal, we were over there in the US for so long but it didn't feel like more than a week," he said.
"All the training we were doing was tedious and long, it seemed to never end then we had the two days of worlds and it was all over.
"It was a thrilling ride, an experience I am so glad to have done but it's also sad because I probably won't get that chance again to compete.
"For a coach, now my goal is train up my kids to aim for that goal as well.
"As someone who is just a kid from Port Macquarie I see some local kids who can make it to the world championships."
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