The Athletics Integrity Unit plans to carry out 800 drugs tests at Tokyo 2020  ©AIU

The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) is planning to carry out 800 drugs tests on track and field athletes competing at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

Three-hundred of the tests will be carried out pre-competition at the Athletes' Village, with 500 conducted in-competition, the AIU said.

Testing will be split across Tokyo, where athletics will take place at Japan National Stadium, and Sapporo where the marathons and race walking will be hosted.

Athletics is due to start here at Tokyo 2020 on July 29.

"The COVID-19 pandemic has presented unprecedented challenges, but it has not affected the AIU's determination to protect the integrity of athletics," said AIU chair David Howman.

"While we have certainly had to adapt the way we are running our testing programme, our clear view was that as much testing as possible should continue while respecting all the applicable health and safety protocols. 

"I believe that the details of our testing activities, from the start of 2020 to the middle of July 2021, will reassure clean athletes competing in Tokyo that we have done all we could to provide a level playing field."

Athletics will take place at Japan National Stadium and in Sapporo ©Getty Images
Athletics will take place at Japan National Stadium and in Sapporo ©Getty Images

The AIU's testing programme is "intelligence led", the organisation says, and aimed at a registered testing pool of 782 athletes from 77 countries.

This includes 315 athletes who are part of a road running pool.

Focus is given to the quality of testing and developing individual plans, while maintaining the volume necessary for a global competition.

The AIU, an independent body which is separate to World Athletics, has collected more than 3,800 samples from tests conducted across the world this year. 

More than 2,700 of these were collected out-of-competition.

In 2020, more than 4,700 samples from athletes from 90 countries were collected, despite challenges caused by the coronavirus pandemic.