In a unanimous vote by its board of directors, The Athletics Congress approved a year-round, out-of-competition drug testing program Sunday at Indianapolis.
TAC, the national governing body for track and field, previously tested only at competitions. Beginning July 1, the top 25 U.S. athletes in each event will be subject to testing any time during the year.
"For me, it's been a long uphill battle," said Edwin Moses, two-time Olympic gold medalist and world record-holder in the men's 400-meter intermediate hurdles, one of the main architects of the 23-page TAC Drugfree Year Round Drug Testing Protocol that was presented to the board.
"For six or seven years, I've had the feeling that random testing was the only way to do it."
The randomness will be determined by computer, said Moses, chairman of a newly created Drug-Testing Oversight Committee.
TAC president Frank Greenberg said the program "may well be a model for other sports organizations. This should dispel all rumors of cover-ups once and for all."
To help implement the program, the board of directors will review a plan to hire an independent audit firm to monitor the disposition of each drug test.
The board also upheld, by a vote of 67-4, a ruling by a special three-man panel to suspend 16 athletes and coaches who participated in a tour of South Africa, a country banned by the International Amateur Athletics Federation because of its policy of racial separation.