Hurley Haywood, after decades in the public eye, has come out as gay at 69 years old.
The five time Rolex 24 at Daytona champion has revealed his sexuality in his autobiography.
In the book, Hurley! From the Beginning, he comments on his widely speculated sexuality.
Recalling an interview with a high school reporter, he remembers it becoming a personal encounter.
The teen revealed to him he had been bullied his entire life because he was gay. He admitted to him that he wanted to kill himself.
‘I said, “Listen, it’s not what you are, it’s who you are,’ Haywood responded.
‘That’s what people remember.’
18 months later, the racing champion received a call from the teen’s mother.
She told him he had saved the young teen journalist’s life.
‘Hearing from that mother, well, it was very emotional,’ Haywood said.
‘And I thought, if my voice is strong enough to help one kid, it might help two kids, or five, or a 100.’
Haywood said his sexuality was well known within the pro racing circuit.
Hurley Haywood reveals how ‘supportive’ the racing community is
‘The racing community has been extremely supportive,’ he told Autostraddle.
‘I’ve never not gotten a ride because I was gay.’
His rumored partner, co-driver and best friend, Peter Gregg, killed himself after the two had a falling out.
While they were rumored to be partners, Haywood denies this.
‘[It’s] totally not true,’ he told Autoweek.’
Hurley! From The Beginning will be available on 10 March.