Is seems rather elitist doesn't it. After all they are very good but "elites"?
Isn't there a better term?
Usually top participants in other sports are simply called "pros". Not all top participants in running are necessarily professionals, since there is such little money to go around. Plus, because there aren't distinct teams for runners to be on, it's not quite as clear cut who is a "pro" and who isn't. "Elites" is a catch all term. Also, hobbyists and top talents usually aren't participating in the same events in other sports, like people do in road races, so there's less of a reason to have a distinction.
I know of no other sports where the top players are commonly called elites as in running.
In most other sports the top players are labelled by accomplishments or honors (or expected honors). Such as probowlers, hall of famer, all star, MVP, Olympian, or Master (which can refer to mastering the sport).
I've never heard of the Royal Family being referred to as "elites".
British Royalty wrote:
The British Royalty are referred to as elites. Therefore, any time they play a sport they are referred to as elites.
So stick that in your pipe and smoke it homeboy.