Martina Navratilova Returns To Wimbledon To ‘Talk Turkey’

For Immediate Release:
10 December 2001

Dawn Carr – 0208 870 3966

London — A familiar face has returned to the place where her name was etched in tennis history. Martina Navratilova, winner of nine Wimbledon Women’s Singles championships over 13 years, is serving up plenty of ‘Love’ on a PETA billboard that hopes to rally meat-eaters to do themselves, and animals, a favour by following a healthy and humane vegetarian diet. Martina, who became a vegetarian early in her career and has attributed her astounding longevity on the court to her diet, appears along with a turkey next to the message, ‘Have a Veggie Christmas and a Meat-Free New Year!’

PETA’s billboard featuring Martina Navratilova will be erected at the intersection of Dunsford Road and Plough Lane and will remain up until 2nd January.

The ad was shot near Martina’s home in Aspen, Colorado, and co-stars a turkey named George, who resides with neighbour John Oates (of the musical duo Hall & Oates). George isn’t on any menu – he’s one of the singer’s non-human companions.

‘If you’re a meat-eater, the ball is in your court,’ says PETA’s Dawn Carr. ‘Who wants a dead animal in centre court for the holidays? Holidays should be a celebration of life, so toss that turkey and choose delicious, healthful and humane festive fare for your family.’

Thirty million turkeys are slaughtered every year in the UK, and most are reared intensively, with thousands of birds crowded together in large sheds. These animals spend their short lives standing on wood shavings which often become wet and dirty and produce ammonia, which causes painful burns and blisters on their feet, legs and breasts. Two and a half million birds die in the sheds every year. Some starve when they are unable to reach food and water. Others die of disease or as a result of being bred and drugged to produce abnormal amounts of flesh, which causes skeletal deformities.

 This isn’t the first time Navratilova has aced one for the animals. In 1995, she hosted PETA’s ‘Love All’ vegetarian fundraiser in London and launched PETA’s ‘Live and Let Live’ vegetarian campaign by posing for an ad in Inside Tennis magazine. In 1998, Navratilova donated her winnings from Celebrity Jeopardy to PETA, and just last month she contributed $1,000 to fund an anti-fur ad in Women’s Wear Daily.

To view the billboard, please visit, where visitors can also send a virtual holiday greeting card with Martina’s vegetarian message to friends and loved ones.