When I think about SA's top black female long-distance runners, only Mapaseka Makhanya comes to mind, and obviously Blanche Moila, whom I am too young to have seen racing in her prime.
Moila was the first black female athlete awarded Springbok colours in 1984 in the 10km, 16km and 21km and represented SA at the World Marathon Cup in Spain in 1993.
On the podium, black female athletes are nowhere to be seen, although they make up the most numbers in races. Most of these women are only in their second or third year of running; they are wives and career women only realising their love for running now.
A running friend in her 40s has run a sub 3:40 marathon time. This lady could probably have ran sub 2:30 in her mid 20s and possibly world-class times in her 30s if she had been developed from a young age.
Josiah Thugwane had the likes of Matthews Temane and Matthews Motshwarateu to look up to, Lusapho April and Stephen Mokoka had Thugwane to look up to. There has not been any generational bridge for black women in long-distance running.