It is Friday morning and Harry Snook is in a car speeding towards Sydney and another landmark moment in his ascending rugby journey.
In the rear-view mirror, but not far from his thoughts, are the Magpies - who will be without Snook when they take on Robb College in a top-of-the-table clash at Armidale on Saturday.
Snook, aged 16 and in year 11 at Calrossy, has been named in the Combined State squad for the Australian Schools Championships, starting at Saint Ignatius' College, Riverview, on Tuesday.
The 23-strong squad consists of players who were not selected in their state team. Snook played for the Association of Independent Co-Educational Schools (AICES) at the NSW trials at Darceyville last week. He still has another year to compete at this open level.
The Combined State XV commences their nationals campaign against Victoria on Tuesday afternoon.
An Australian Schools Barbarians side will be selected at the conclusion of the championships, and will play Samoa.
Snook has described making the Combined State squad as "right up there" in terms of his most memorable rugby achievements.
"I was really lucky, I think, to get the call-up," he said. "I'm really happy. It will be a good opportunity. [I'm] hoping to make the most of it."
Snook played fullback for AICES at the state trials, he is Calrossy's No.10 and the Magpies' No.11.
He made a spectacular first-grade debut in the Magpies' 42-17 defeat of Barbarians on May 18 - scoring four tries and kicking seven goals, for a club record 37 points.
He believes that Tamworth can win the premiership.
A win on Saturday against the reigning premiers would inject Tamworth with even more confidence, in their pursuit of what would be a remarkable achievement - given their travails in recent years.
The two sides met at Rugby Park on June 16, with Robb winning 34-30.
Snook described Tamworth as a "really positive group" who is helping him become a better player.
"Being able to play a good level of footy every week will obviously help me in the long run," he said.