Lewis Hamilton launches the Johnnie Walker responsible drinking challenge



    MONTREAL, June 7 /CNW Telbec/ - Lewis Hamilton, the Formula One racing
sensation, roared into Montreal with Johnnie Walker, official sponsor of
Vodafone McLaren Mercedes. He has challenged all Montrealers and all Grand
Prix du Canada visitors to make a personal pledge to responsible drinking both
during race weekend and beyond as part of a campaign with Educ'alcool.
    Addressing the crowd in front of an SAQ Signature store on
Sainte-Catherine Street, Hamilton, who has climbed the podium following each
of his first five professional races, invited everyone to sign a pledge board
which will be posted at the SAQ location all day tomorrow. Over the weekend,
the pledge board will be available for signing at the Circuit Gilles
Villeneuve.
    Every signature on this personal pledge board will be matched by a one
dollar donation from Johnnie Walker to Educ'alcool, an independent,
not-for-profit organization whose mission is to make Quebecers accountable for
their drinking by encouraging informed, moderate behaviour. The Responsible
Drinking Challenge is the newest initiative reinforcing JOHNNIE WALKER(R)'s
global 'Winners always stay in control - don't drink and drive' message.
    "As someone who makes a living driving at speeds exceeding 250 km per
hour, I know the importance of staying in control," said Hamilton. "I am in
the fortunate position of being able to draw attention to this issue. Staying
in control is key to dealing with the varying situations that we all face on
the road. I encourage people to celebrate responsibly, and if they do drink,
to make certain that there is a designated driver or a taxi to take them home
in order to ensure everyone's safety."
    "Like all major cities, Montreal faces challenges when it comes to
impaired driving. You are all aware of the unfortunate incidents resulting
from them. The timing of our initiative is designed to get everyone thinking
about responsible drinking and safe driving, as this great city moves into a
summer of long weekends and festivals. We sincerely hope this effort will help
make a difference on Quebec roads," Hamilton told assembled fans.
    On Tuesday, June 12th, two-time F1 World Champion Mika Hakinnen, Johnnie
Walker Global Responsible Drinking Ambassador, will give the completed pledge
board to representatives of the Montreal police. He will also present a cheque
to Educ'alcool at the Johnnie Walker Leader's Rally, an innovative event
designed to showcase the importance of designated drivers.
    With a global television audience of over 2.9 billion annually, Formula 1
is the most watched sport in the world. Since 2005, through its partnership
with Vodafone McLaren Mercedes, Johnnie Walker has reached tens of millions of
consumers with messages about staying in control, making positive choices, and
responsible drinking.
    "We are thrilled to be the first city in the world to hear Lewis
Hamilton's inspiring words about responsible drinking and safe driving,"
commented Michele D'Angelo, Director of Marketing for Johnnie Walker in
Canada. "We urge all Canadians to make a personal commitment to Responsible
Drinking, and to set a world-class standard of commitment to staying in
control and making enlightened decisions about drinking responsibly.

    About Diageo

    Diageo (Dee-AH-Gee-O) is the world's leading premium drinks business with
an outstanding collection of beverage alcohol brands across spirits, wine and
beer. These brands include Johnnie Walker, Guinness, Smirnoff, J&B, Baileys,
Cuervo, Tanqueray, Captain Morgan, Crown Royal, Beaulieu Vineyard and Sterling
Vineyards wines.
    Diageo is a global company, trading in some 180 countries around the
world. The company is listed on both the New York Stock Exchange (DEO) and the
London Stock Exchange (DGE). For more information about Diageo, its people,
brands, and performance, visit us at http://www.diageo.com.
    Celebrating life, every day, everywhere, responsibly.

    About Educ'alcool

    Educ'alcool is an independent, not-for-profit organization. Its members
are parapublic institutions, alcoholic beverage industry associations and
individuals from various milieus (public health, education, journalism), who,
fully of aware of their social responsibility, implement information,
education and prevention programs designed to help adults make enlightened,
responsible decisions about drinking. Educ'alcool's commitment is accurately
reflected in its slogan: La modération a bien meilleur goût / Moderation is
always in good taste.




For further information:

For further information: Tina Costakos; Rick Leckner, Maison Brison,
(514) 792-0772, tina@maisonbrison.com; Diageo Contact: Gillian Cook, (416)
626-2000 Ext. 2244, gillian.cook@Diageo.com

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