NEW YORK (AP) _ Actress Carrie Nye, the wife of television personality Dick Cavett, chased a mugger for a block after he snatched her purse Wednesday, but the man punched her and jumped into a waiting car, police said.

She refused medical treatment after the incident at 3:15 a.m., said police Sgt. Raymond O'Donnell.

She had arrived at her Manhattan apartment building and was trying to find her keys in the lobby when a man surprised her from behind, O'Donnell said. The man knocked her to the ground, ripped away her pocketbook and fled, he said.The purse contained $15, she told police.

The actress chased the mugger until he turned and punched her once in the face, then jumped into the car, police said.

Cavett won an Emmy Award in 1972 as host of ''The Dick Cavett Show,'' an interview show.

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LONDON (AP) - Gamblers will have an unusual opportunity when the horse- racing season begins at Epsom. They can bet on Princess Anne.

The only daughter of Queen Elizabeth II is to compete in her first competitive horse race when she takes part in the Farriers Invitation Private Sweepstakes this spring for the benefit of charity, Buckingham Palace says.

The princess, who rode on the British showjumping team at the 1976 Montreal Olympics, will compete in a 16-horse field of top amateur jockeys in the 11/2 -mile event.

''It's marvelous she wants to take part,'' said Mark Kershaw, clerk of the Epsom course, southwest of London.

Proceeds from the event will benefit the Riding for the Disabled fund. ''The princess said she was very keen to race for this charity,'' Kershaw said.

In another announcement about Princess Anne, the palace said Wednesday she would travel to India next month to resume her tour that was interrupted in October by the assassination of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.

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BARCELONA, Spain (AP) - Spanish bandleader Xavier Cugat, 85, who was hospitalized two days earlier with serious respiratory problems, said Wednesday that he hoped to be discharged from the hospital in three or four days.

Cugat introduced to Americans some Latin American rhythms, including the cha-cha-cha, in the early 1960s.

Since he returned to his native Barcelona from the United States in 1978, Cugat has often been in and out of the hospital with heart and respiratory problems.

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MIAMI (AP) - Sixteen-year-old Kelly Ann Hu insisted she was delighted to be crowned Miss Teen USA 1985, but she couldn't stop her tears.

''I'm going to keep crying for a whole year. I'm just so happy,'' said the dark-haired beauty from Honolulu Tuesday night after winning the crown in the nationally televised pageant finale.

She was chosen by a panel of 11 judges and was crowned by Cherise Haugen, Miss Teen USA 1984.

The first runner-up was 17-year-old Miss Wyoming, Emily Ernst of Gillette.

The other finalists were, in order, Miss Washington State, Dru Homer, 18, of Selah; Miss Texas, Konae Wehle, 16, of Humble; and Miss Missouri, Rhonda Hoglen, 18, of Kansas City.

Miss Hu won a 1985 sports car and a runabout with a Yamaha outboard engine and trailer as part of $100,000 in cash and prizes.

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OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - Gov. Bob Kerrey has become the Omaha Press Club's latest ''Face on the Barroom Floor.''

The caricature by Omaha World-Herald artist James Horan was installed on the Press Club floor in downtown Omaha Tuesday, and Kerrey was present.

The caricature shows Kerrey running along a road from Lincoln to Washington, reporters panting to keep up. Behind him is Kerrey's frequent date, actress Debra Winger, in a limousine chauffeured by a state trooper.