A Red Deer cheer team is hoping to become the best in the world.
Premier Academy Cheerleading and Tumbling’s senior level six team, Ivy League, has earned the right to compete in the 2020 Cheerleading World Championships in Orlando, Fla., April 24 to 26.
The 17-member, all-girl squad is the first Red Deer cheer team to go to the competition.
“Getting a bid to worlds as a first-year team is something that we are incredibly proud of,” said Riana Luck, coach and Premier Academy owner.
The athletes on the team, from across central Alberta, are between the ages of 12 and 18 years of age.
“They’re incredibly excited. Some of them have been on quite a journey to get here. Some have been here for 10 years. Some have been here training for five or six years, and one of the girls has only been here for one.
“There’s quite a diverse background of girls on the team and they’ve been working really hard to get to this point,” she said.
Luck said it takes years of training to get to this level.
“The team practises three times a week, for two hours each time. Then a number of them come in for extra training time on their own for tumbling classes and stuff like that,” she said.
The team will be busy leading up to the competition in April, said Luck.
“We have a number of competitions over the next couple of months to get them in front of a crowd again to practise their routine so they’re ready to go,” she said.
Coach Matt Wiggins said the girls on the team are “focused, hardworking, strong and driven.”
“We are up against some very tough competition in Florida, and these athletes will be working harder than ever to perfect their routine,” said Wiggins.
Level six cheerleading is a cross between high-level tumbling and stunting.
Ivy League received the bid to compete in the world championships at the Cold Snap Cheer competition in Edmonton this past weekend.