A federal appeals court has upheld a decision permitting New Jersey to administer random drug tests to jockeys, saying the tests do not represent an invasion of privacy.

The ruling by the U.S. 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia supports a New Jersey Racing Commission regulation requiring jockeys to take breath and urine tests for drug and alcohol use.

Five prominent jockeys, including Bill Shoemaker and Angel Cordero, sued the commission April 16, 1985, alleging the regulation violated privacy rights.

The appeals court said: "Frequent alcohol and drug testing is an effective means of demonstrating that persons engaged in the horse racing industry are not subject to outside influences."

The racing commission had argued the tests are necessary for the safety of jockeys on the track . . .

Arthroscopic surgery planned for Snow Chief, the 1986 Preakness winner, on Tuesday is "more routine than a person's having his appendix taken out," according to the veterinarian who will operate.

Dr. Greg Ferraro of the Southern California Equine Foundation will perform the one-hour procedure at the Hollywood Park equine hospital in Inglewood, Calif, removing bone fragments from the thoroughbred's right knee with a microscopic needle.

Ferraro said the colt could have been running with the bone chip, discovered Thursday, "for two or three races." Winner of six of eight starts this year, Snow Chief ran a well-beaten third in his last start, Hollywood's Silver Screen Handicap.

The colt is expected to return to racing in 1987.