British professional racing driver Danny Watts has announced for the first time publicly that he's gay.

“It's not a decision I took lightly,” Watts told Badger GP. “This secret has been eating me up inside for a while, and I can't hold it in any more. Something snapped in me last year, and I began coming out to my friends. Now it's time for the public to know.”

The 37-year-old Watts retired from Strakka Racing last year after two class wins at Le Mans. He is raising a son with ex-wife Fiona Leggate.

“Now that I don't have to think about keeping my team and sponsors happy, I can do what's right for me,” he said.

“I can only hope that people will continue to treat me like a normal person,” Watts said. “I'm still the same person I've always been. I'm just no longer living a lie that I started to protect my career.”

Watts added that he'll become a charity ambassador for Gay Racers, a queer motorsport group.