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17-yr-old crowned fastest texter

Eleven highly trained texters from across the US competed in a series of challenges for speed, accuracy and dexterity. Austin Wierschke (17) nabbed the top prize and was named the champion of the sixth annual US LG National Texting Competition.


Fastest finger first:  Austin Wierschke and Kent Augustine in the final round during the sixth Annual LG US National Texting Championship in New York’s Times Square. Wierschke won after composing a 149-character message, with capitalisation, punctuation and various symbols, in 39 seconds. Pic/AFP

The three rounds of the competition included texting a verse of Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star while blind-folded, texting with hands behind their backs and Text Blitz, where phrases were splashed before contestants and they had to copy the words as fast as possible.

Wierschke won the prize for composing a 149-character message, with capitalisation, punctuation and various symbols, in 39 seconds. It was the second year in a row that the Rhinelander, Wisconsin native claimed the top texting spot.

“I killed it,” he said unabashedly about his victory, which comes with a $50,000 (Rs 27.63 lakh)purse. Wierschke , who sent 500 texts a day to friends to prepare for the challenge, says he will save his prize money for college.

The finger-fast champ also plans to hold on to his title and he announced to future contenders, “I’ll see you next year ... bring it on.” Runner-up Kent Augustine, from Queens, New York said he was ‘a little disappointed’ at having lost by only a few seconds. But the New Yorker still landed $10,000 (Rs 5.52 lakh) in prize money for his second place finish.

500 The number of text messages that Austin sends to his friends

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