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Oct. 11, 2011 at 6:00 AM
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Bike messengers race in Texas

AUSTIN, Texas, Oct. 11 (UPI) -- Organizers of the North American Cycle Courier Championships said about 88 bike messengers from across the United States gathered in Texas for the race.

The organizers of the 16-year-old event, which was held in Austin for the first time during the weekend, said about 88 bike messengers participated in Saturday's qualifying heats and about 50 made it to the finals Sunday, the Austin American-Statesman reported Monday.

The race, which extended for about 50 miles, included making stops and getting signatures for pickups and drop-offs in the same way the couriers normally conduct their business.

Mason O'Neal of Austin, the fastest man in the race, finished with a time of 2 hours, 2 minutes, 52 seconds. The fastest woman, Christina Peck of Chicago, finished in 2 hours, 12 minutes, 47 seconds. They were both awarded a $2,500 bike frame and other biking gear.

Moose rescued from pool after 4 1/2 hours

MANCHESTER, N.H., Oct. 11 (UPI) -- A New Hampshire man said it took him and about a dozen other men 4 1/2 hours to free a young bull moose that fell through the cover of his swimming pool.

George Trapotsis of Manchester said he went out into his yard to investigate a noise about 9:15 p.m. Friday and spotted the moose, which he said likely decided to charge his fence into the pool area because he was spooked by a light turned on by Trapotsis' wife Joyce, the New Hampshire Union Leader, Manchester, reported Monday.

Trapotsis said the moose fell through the pool cover and into the water. He said he and neighbor Leo Desrochers worked quickly to untangle the animal from the cover.

"Then he was as happy as he could be swimming around in the pool," Trapotsis said.

A Manchester police officer and state Fish and Game Conservation Officer Geoff Pushee arrived and the four men soon found they could not move the moose on their own.

The police officer called a local fire station for help and before long about a dozen men were using ropes attached to the moose's antlers to steer it out of the pool.

Pushee said the moose, a 600- to 700-pound bull, was "a little stubborn" after his exodus from the water, but the men eventually coaxed it to return to the wild.

Thief takes horse's tail hair

BELGRADE, Mont., Oct. 11 (UPI) -- A Montana woman says she felt "violated" after discovering someone had entered her horse's pen and lopped off its tail.

Alisha Novotny of Belgrade said she entered the pen of her horse, Raz, Oct. 2 and immediately noticed the mare's tail was clipped, KECI-TV, Missoula, reported Monday.

"I just happened to glance at her tail and I was like, 'Oh my gosh!'" she said. "It looks like they just grabbed pretty fast and chopped."

Novotny said the incident left her feeling "violated."

"I felt really weird for three days, just because someone was here and I don't know what they did to her," Alisha said.

Police said thefts of horse hair, which can be valuable for creating bridles and other items, have been an increasing problem in the area during the past half year.

'Idol' audition ends in jail stay

NEW YORK, Oct. 11 (UPI) -- A Pittsburgh woman says she spent five days in jail after trying to bluff her way into "American Idol" auditions in New York.

Brittany Acosta, 21, said she had repeatedly auditioned for the show in various cities, but was never asked to perform an on-camera audition for judges Jennifer Lopez, Steven Tyler and Randy Jackson, the New York Post reported Monday.

Acosta said she tried to bluff her way to an audition last week in New York by claiming she was next up to see the judges, but she was taken from the convention center by security guards.

"I'm not leaving. This is my dream. My life is ruined," the police report quotes her as shouting while being led away.

Acosta said she was arrested and held for five days. It was unclear whether any charges are being sought against her.

Acosta said the experience has soured her on "Idol" and she is now setting her sights on "The Voice," NBC's "Idol" competitor that counts Christina Aguilera as a judge.

"I'm doing 'The Voice' callbacks," Acosta said.

"I think it's going to be better anyways. Christina Aguilera is from [the Pittsburgh area], so I'd like to compare myself to her, and I love her," she said.

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