It's new to Howard County, and it could be with us for a long time if things go as I predict.

The first ever DUthe2 Duathlon will be held at Western Regional Park Sunday starting at 7 a.m. The event features over 500 athletes — some from as far away as Florida and New York.

The duathlon will have a two-mile run, a 26-mile bike ride followed by a four-mile run. Even before the race is held, it is already the largest duathlon in the mid-Atlantic region.

Race director Daniel Serpico told me that of the 550 athletes, almost half of them are first-time duathletes. He also pointed out that 70 percent of the entrants are new to muti-sports programs in general. Multi-sport programs include triathlons, swimming, biking and running; and aquathons, running and swimming.


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Duathlons, once called biathlons, have actually been around even longer than triathlons but have recently been overshadowed by the explosion in triathlons nationally. Plus, there was a name confusion. Biathlon now refers to the Winter Olympics sport that combines skiing and shooting.

Many athletes like the duathlon because it does not involve swimming.

Daniel said that the proceeds from DUthe2 will go to two charities: Adventures for the Cure and Back on my Feet.

I have known my share of tournament directors, and I have to rate Daniel as one of the most enthusiastic. His enthusiasm alone tells me that this event is here to stay.

Former NFL players teach youths at clinic

When I was a young semi-athlete lacking in both ability and focus, I hated the word "clinic" because that usually meant you were either sick or about to get a 10-foot-long needle put in some part of your body.

Last week, I attended another kind of a clinic at the fields behind the East Columbia Branch Library on Cradlerock Way where five former National Football League players were putting on a clinic for young football players.

What better way to learn football basics than from those who have played at the highest level of the sport?

On hand were Brian Mitchell, one of the greatest kick returners in NFL history; Raven Caldwell, linebacker for the Redskins for five years; Ed Simmons, 10 years at offensive tackle for the Redskins; Gary Clark, one of the Redskins' legends at wide receiver; and John Booty, a former Jets, Eagles and Cardinals defensive back. EXIT Realty, Lenny Harris of Diversified Financial Mortgage, Chase Bank and The Gridiron Legacy sponsored the clinic.

Tennis community should remember Peter Finck

One of the late Peter Finck's closest friends, Milt Kline, called me a while back wondering why the tennis community had done nothing to recognize his friend's achievements. Kline thinks that some sort of recognition should be visible to all of us who appreciated Finck's unselfish work for the tennis community. I happen to agree with him.

We allow people to pass by in our lives without blinking an eye. We should have some way of saying "thank you" for the positive role Peter played in so many lives.

I was delighted to see the Columbia Junior Tennis Tournament hand out sportsmanship awards in his name at their recently held tournament. We need to see more of that.

Hammond grad makes U.S. lacrosse team

Kelly Berger, the current women's lacrosse head coach at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, has been named to the U.S. women's lacrosse senior national team roster.

Tryouts were held last weekend at UMBC.

Berger, a Hammond graduate, is one of 36 selected. The 2013 World Cup team will be chosen from this group.

This story has been updated.