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PGA Tour Announces Stringent Drug-Testing Policy

SI recently drafted a press release trumpeting the PGA Tour's plans to penalize players who are caught usingperformance-enhancing drugs

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

December 18, 2006

PGA Tour Announces Stringent Drug-Testing Policy

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, FLA.--PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem today announced a tough new policy on performance-enhancing drugs that will go into effect in 2013, the year after he retires. "We want to give this important issue the careful and thorough deliberation it deserves," said Finchem. "Unlike that grandstanding little hussy Carolyn Bivens, we felt it was important not to rush into a decision simply to mollify the nattering nabobs in the press."

The Tour's policy will be unique in that it will not use blood or urine testing, which the commissioner considers "too yucky." Instead, to determine violations, the Tour will rely primarily on locker-room gossip. "We think this preserves the time-honored tradition of players policing themselves, which is integral to the fabric of our game," said Finchem.

The Tour will also place a drop box in every clubhouse, allowing the players to narc on one another. Although the process will be anonymous, Tour staff will monitor the drop box to guarantee that Tom Pernice is limited to three submissions per day.

In keeping with the Tour's long-standing tradition, any fines or suspensions will be kept strictly confidential to ensure maintenance of the sport's squeaky-clean image, John Daly notwithstanding. The public can rest assured that sanctions will be "swift and merciless," according to the commissioner. The penalty stages:

•The first violation will result in a $100 fine and a snarky phone call from the commissioner, who will grouse about potentially negative publicity.

•The second violation will result in a sternly worded letter from one of the Tour's vice presidents, although which one is still undetermined, as even the Tour has trouble keeping track of them all.

•Upon the third violation, the player will be forced to play in every Fall Series event that year. "We know this is a drastic measure," Finchem said, "but the policy has to have some teeth to be effective."

It is important to note that these proposals must be approved by the Player Directors of the Tour Policy Board--a group Finchem affectionately refers to as "the four blind mice." Said the commissioner, "It is the vigilance of the players that has allowed us to put this historic policy into place."

 

GOLF PLUS will next appear in the Jan. 22, 2007, SPORTS ILLUSTRATED.

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