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Why do Africans make such great runners? For the same reason that the Irish produce such great boxers: our love of stereotyping, writes Jennifer O'Connell.

18th August, 2012
'The sudden sea change was reflected online, where those foolish enough to post jibes about Nevin found themselves rounded upon by other users'.

There's one question which gets trotted out every time there's a world sporting event: why do Afro-Caribbeans make such great runners?

As with most attempts at armchair anthropology, the question itself makes us uncomfortable - nobody wants to be seen to reduce whole countries, let alone entire races, to a few physical traits.

It's also fairly widely off the mark. Because, of course, it's not all Afro-Caribbeans who have the potential to be great runners....

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